And There I'll Be a Soldier: A Western Story (Five Star Western Series)

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9781432826055: And There I'll Be a Soldier: A Western Story (Five Star Western Series)

This story begins as the War Between the States begins, and follows the fortunes of Caleb Cole, of the 18th Missouri, and Ryan McCalla, of the 2nd Texas Infantry, to their first encounter at the Battle of Shiloh, and tells of Grace Dehner, who comes to know both of these protagonists involved in the Battle of Corinth.

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About the Author:

Johnny D. Boggs, who Booklist magazine said was -among the best Western writers at work today,- has won six Spur Awards from the Western Writers of America and a Western Heritage Wrangler Award from the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum.

From Booklist:

The prolific Boggs intercuts the stories of two Civil War recruits, Missourian Caleb Cole and Texan Ryan McCalla, as they make their way through minor skirmishes (Caleb) and callow flirtations (Ryan) toward the savage two-day battle at Shiloh. Caleb is an innocent farm boy who is shocked not only by the brutality of war, but also by the corruption of yokels who have suddenly become officers. Ryan, ostensibly cut of finer cloth, is dragged down by war until he’s thoughtlessly able to kill an old man and bash his dead face repeatedly. Plausibly, Boggs draws his innocents together in some of the novel’s most affecting moments. But their individual encounters with a nurse, Grace Dehner, are less plausible, and the strange epilogue, set in 1895, undermines what could have been a more satisfying story. No question, Boggs captures the quick terror of combat in harsh scenes that bring to mind The Red Badge of Courage and Ambrose Bierce’s “What I Saw atShiloh.” Students of the battle will note his flawless research. --John Mort

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