The Bookshelf

The digital home of book reviews and author interviews—and your source of the most up-to-date information on all things Civil War literature

Published 8/10/2016

McCARDLE: A Just and Holy Cause? (2016)

By: George C. Rable Category: Book Reviews

Marcus Bethune Ely was a dutiful soldier, but no diehard Confederate.

Published 8/3/2016

WOODWORTH & GREAR (eds.): The Tennessee Campaign of 1864 (2016)

By: Ben H. Severance Category: Book Reviews

In the dying days of the Confederacy, the ill-fated Army of Tennessee embarked on a great forlorn hope to destroy a numerically superior foe, capture a heavily fortified city, and turn the war around.

Published 7/27/2016

CONLIN: One Nation Divided by Slavery (2015)

By: Kristen Epps Category: Book Reviews

This well-written, timely monograph enriches our understanding of the sectional conflict, the fluctuating nature of nationalism, and slavery's role in the memory of the American Revolution.

Published 7/20/2016

KURTZ: Excommunicated from the Union (2015)

By: William S. Cossen Category: Book Reviews

This slim, well-written volume offers a straightforward argument that should move the historiographical debate in a number of subjects: from the role of religion in the war and the significance of ethnic identity among soldiers, to the place of Catholics in the wider American society...

Published 7/20/2016

EGAN: The Immortal Irishman (2016)

By: Thomas J. Ryan Category: Book Reviews

Egan relates Meagher's steadfastness as commander of the Irish Brigade—steadfastness in the face of the mass slaughter of his men in battle after battle.

Published 7/13/2016

BLUMENTHAL: A Self-Made Man (2016)

By: Robert O. Faith Category: Book Reviews

"Ultimately," Blumenthal argues, "Lincoln became the master of events because he was the master of politics."

Published 7/6/2016

HODES: Mourning Lincoln (2015)

By: Bruce W. Eelman Category: Book Reviews

[D]eft use of personal papers, diaries, letters, and a host of other primary sources reveals how the president's death both unified and further divided the country in the wake of war...

Published 6/29/2016

SHULTZ & MINGUS: The Second Day at Gettysburg (2015)

By: Thomas J. Ryan Category: Book Reviews

Shultz and Mingus have set a new standard for the July 2 action at Gettysburg, especially with regard to the critical engagements that took place toward the center of the line on Cemetery Ridge.

Published 6/29/2016

ROSS: Free State of Jones (2016)

By: Matthew C. Hulbert Category: Book Reviews Lost Cause trope after another is shattered against the gritty counter-narrative of men and women who temporarily erased the color line in defiance of everything the architects of the Confederate Experiment hoped to achieve.

Published 6/22/2016

HOOPER: Lincoln's Generals' Wives (2016)

By: Antoinette G. van Zelm Category: Book Reviews

Candice Shy Hooper explores how Jessie Benton Fremont, Mary Ellen March McClellan, Eleanor Ewing Sherman, and Julia Dent Grant motivated, guided, encouraged and occasionally clashed with their famous husbands during the Civil War.