A SAVAGE THUNDER by Jim Murphy
Kirkus Star

A SAVAGE THUNDER

Antietam and the Bloody Road to Freedom
Age Range: 10 - 14

KIRKUS REVIEW

Murphy returns to the War Between the States for this account of Antietam, known as the bloodiest battle in American history. As the subtitle suggests, the author makes a direct connection between the battle and the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation, opening by reminding readers that up to this point, the war was being fought nominally over the preservation of the Union, not the underlying issue of slavery. He sketches in the major players—Abraham Lincoln, Robert E. Lee and the truculent commander of the Union’s Army of the Potomac, George McClellan—and how political and military maneuvering led to the blood-soaked standoff northwest of the nation’s capitol. The liberal inclusion of both archival material and maps showing troop movements during skirmishes helps to draw readers in, but what makes this impassioned volume speak—literally—are the many primary-source quotations of those involved, from the least to the most. The author deftly develops his characters, most notably the stubborn, vainglorious McClellan, whose inadequate intelligence and low regard for his commander-in-chief led him to botch the campaign and arguably to prolong the war. Grand. (notes, bibliography, index) (Nonfiction. 10-14)

Pub Date: July 7th, 2009
ISBN: 978-0-689-87633-2
Page count: 112pp
Publisher: McElderry
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15th, 2009




MORE BY JIM MURPHY

ChildrenINVINCIBLE MICROBE by Jim Murphy
by Jim Murphy
ChildrenTHE CROSSING by Jim Murphy
by Jim Murphy