Abraham's Battle: A Novel of Gettysburg

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Overview

Abraham, an ex-slave, tries his best to prepare himself and the little girl in his charge for the Confederate soldiers who have begun filing into Gettysburg. When he comes face-to-face with a young Southern soldier, he's suspicious -- Lamar is, after all, the enemy. Once they begin discussing the war and the general state of events, though, the two find some common ground. They might be friends -- if Lamar wasn't from Georgia, and in Gettysburg to fight.

When Lamar falls in ...

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Overview

Abraham, an ex-slave, tries his best to prepare himself and the little girl in his charge for the Confederate soldiers who have begun filing into Gettysburg. When he comes face-to-face with a young Southern soldier, he's suspicious -- Lamar is, after all, the enemy. Once they begin discussing the war and the general state of events, though, the two find some common ground. They might be friends -- if Lamar wasn't from Georgia, and in Gettysburg to fight.

When Lamar falls in battle, it is not one of his fellow soldiers who helps him off the battlefield -- it is Abraham. One friend helps another. Few had seen such courage and honesty in the Civil War, however, and Abraham's deed does not go unnoticed or unrewarded. He in fact receives the highest honor imaginable...

In 1863, as the Civil War approaches his home in Gettysburg and he realizes that a big battle is about to begin, a freed slave named Abraham decides to join the ambulance corps of the Union Army.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Donna T. Brumby
Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, is a renowned name today, one which can conjure intense images. But what if, before the famous battle and after the stirring speeches, Gettysburg had been simply your home? Banks shares here a fictionalized version of those important hours and days surrounding the events we now call "Gettysburg." Told in simple language for a young, inexperienced audience, this novel describes the lives and thoughts of three main characters--Abraham, an ex-slave who becomes an ambulance driver after the combat; Ladysmith Lightly, the young daughter of a Union soldier and Abraham's friend; and Lamar Cooper, a Confederate private from the hills of northern Georgia. Abraham Lincoln's visit and legendary address are also included. Although the plot and actions sometimes appear a little contrived, the emotion and humanity described ring true. Grand events and great causes do call common people to live above ordinary existence; this short novel does a nice job of explaining that to young readers today.
School Library Journal
Gr 5-7-Ex-slave Abraham Small is now a freeman living in Gettysburg, PA. On the day before the battle, while picnicking with his employer's young daughter, he meets Lamar Cooper, a 16-year-old Confederate soldier. Lamar is a poor farmer, not a slave owner, and Abraham is the first black man he has ever met. Abraham, with dark memories of his captivity, is wary of the young man. Still, he shares his picnic with him. This encounter convinces Abraham that he should be fighting for the Union and against slavery, and he volunteers as an ambulance driver. Later, during the battle, he happens upon the wounded Lamar and takes him to a field hospital. The nature of war and animosity are simply explored in a manner that will cause young readers to think about such issues themselves. To sophisticated readers, Abraham might seem almost too eloquent and too noble, and the secondary characters are only sketchily drawn. The final scenes, wherein Abraham escorts Abraham Lincoln around the battlefield, are somewhat contrived, although they portray the president in a human, touching way. For young readers struggling to understand the complex topic of the Civil War, this quiet novel will yield thought-provoking ideas and humanize that terrible conflict.-Elizabeth M. Reardon, McCallie School, Chattanooga, TN Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
With a large scope to belie its length, a novella that paints in simple scenes of the battle of Gettysburg the essential sorrow and causes of the entire Civil War.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780689840463
  • Publisher: Aladdin
  • Publication date: 2/1/2001
  • Edition description: 1 ALADDIN
  • Pages: 96
  • Age range: 9 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 5.12 (w) x 7.72 (h) x 0.28 (d)

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 17, 2007

    A brief look into the lives and hardships of civil war...

    This book was a good story about the hardships everyone suffered on boths sides of this terrible war. Many lives were lost and many friendships were made in the most unlikely places. It is somewhat of a difficult read for children younger than 3rd grade. My 3rd grader needed more explanation as to the events but totally understood the struggles and the pain and since of loss by all.

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