IRONCLAD! by Seymour Reit


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The opening conversation, variously ""growled,"" ""shouted,"" and ""snapped"" by Gideon Welles and Edwin Stanton, may send you reeling, and in general Reit's invented dialogue and verbal sound effects don't serve the purposes of either fact or fiction with any distinction. Otherwise, although the easy recreation of the Monitor/Merrimac confrontation (""a duel between a small iron terrier and an armed bear"") is unexceptionable and a few points about the Monitor's innovative design are made along the way, this is too narrowly focused and graceless to inspire much curiosity about John Ericsson's inventive genius. And Reit's conclusion obscures the distinction between the battle's dramatic effect on Union morale and its limited military significance.

Pub Date: Feb. 1st, 1976
Publisher: Dodd, Mead