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Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Better Than Any History Book

In looking at a daily bookseller/librarian newsletter, I came across this:
We have to respect the book for what it is: an art object that we should defend, defend against censors, narrow-minded educators and, most of all, the dangers of war. Fiction has described wars better than any history book because a novelist, a true novelist, is not a warrior. Literature and war carry opposite genes.--Mai Ghoussoub, from "Texterminators," published in this month's issue of Words Without Borders.
How very true this is! I remember reading a Civil War story in elementary school, The Perilous Road by William O. Steele [J STE]. This Newbury honor award winner was very thought provoking for a young reader. Now that I'm older, I've read many novels in which the "dangers of war" are fully evident. Let me recommend these Civil War titles for adults:

Bahr, Howard. The Judas Field: A Novel of the Civil War. [F BAH]

Frazier, Charles. Cold Mountain. [F FRA, also in audio AB FRA]

Kantor, MacKinlay. Long Remember. [F MAC]

Olmstead, Robert. A Coal Black Horse. [F OLM]

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