The Sands of Pride by William R. Trotter, Paperback | Barnes & Noble
The Sands of Pride

The Sands of Pride

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by William R. Trotter
     
 

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In this grandly ambitious masterpiece of Civil War fiction, noted novelist and historian William R. Trotter has created nothing less than an epic re-creation of the whole experience of the war—from secession to Gettysburg—within the microcosm of North Carolina, a theater of war never before brought to life in a major novel of the Civil War. Trotter's

Overview

In this grandly ambitious masterpiece of Civil War fiction, noted novelist and historian William R. Trotter has created nothing less than an epic re-creation of the whole experience of the war—from secession to Gettysburg—within the microcosm of North Carolina, a theater of war never before brought to life in a major novel of the Civil War. Trotter's powerful story follows the intertwined fates of over two dozen major characters—real and fictional, Union and Confederate, combatants and civilians—swept up in the hurricane of war. In The Sands of Pride, he chronicles the exploits of bold blockade-runners like Southerner Matthew Sloane, intrepid naval warriors like Federal officer William Barker Cushings, sadistic bushwhackers like Cyrus Bone, and spies like the Confederacy's seductive Belle O'Neal. The novel's center of gravity is the beautiful coastal city of Wilmington, North Carolina, in the midst of a vibrant, bawdy "Golden Age". It was the South's most vital port and guarded by the largest, most formidable earthen fortress ever built in America, Fort Fisher, a stupendous feat of engineering and a symbol of Southern defiance. After every other significant Rebel port had been vanquished, Fort Fisher's guns kept open Wilmington's boisterous docks, which poured supplies from Europe that kept the Confederacy alive. The Sands of Pride tells a story both vast and intimate. Civil War buffs will be stunned by the stirring events depicted here. All readers will be fascinated by its colorful, passionate characters and swept along by its page-turning momentum.

Editorial Reviews

Providence Journal
The Sands of Pride is vividly rendered and swiftly paced.
Publishers Weekly
By the author of the notable nonfiction trilogy The Civil War in North Carolina which Charles Frazier acknowledged as source material for Cold Mountain this all-encompassing roman clef unfolds as a quixotic, skirmish-by-skirmish account of the early battles of the Civil War along North Carolina's labyrinthine coast, stretching from Elizabeth City, south of Norfolk, Va., to Fort Caswell on the Atlantic banks, opposite Fort Fisher at the mouth of the Cape Fear River south of Wilmington. Opening on New Year's Eve 1860, almost six months before North Carolina's grudging decision to secede from the Union on May 20, 1861, this sprawling account revolves around the bustling seaport of Wilmington, which serves as the lifeline of the Confederacy. The future North Carolina governor, Zebulon Vance; the president of the Confederacy, Jefferson Davis; the architect of Fort Fisher, Col. William Lamb; Lafayette Baker, deputy director of the fledgling Secret Service; Gen. Robert E. Lee; Gen. Ambrose Burnside; and the naval commander William Barker Cushing are some of the real-life historic figures that are artfully integrated with an extensive dramatis personae of flamboyant and idiosyncratic fictional characters including Belle O'Neal, a sensuous rebel spy; Cyrus Bone, a Confederate deserter; and Largo Landau, the daughter of a Wilmington merchant who becomes a patron of the poor. This masterful epic offers insight into the perfidious political agendas and personal greed underlying the bumbling and horrors suffered by both sides during the war. As it concludes in July 1863, portending the fall of Fort Fisher some two years later, a sequel seems likely. National advertising; author tour. (May 24) Forecast: An impressive novel from a distinguished scholar/author, this title will appeal to the countless fans of Cold Mountain as well as to the Civil War buffs who normally stick to nonfiction. Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Monumental, bombs-bursting-in-air epic of nearly 50 characters who fight, steal, seduce, scheme, and have the time of their lives in and around Civil War-era North Carolina. Indeed, you'd think that state was the epicenter of the conflict in this massive fiction whose tangled plot spans only the years 1861-63. But that's no surprise, given that in his three-volume history, The Civil War in North Carolina, Trotter argued persuasively that the coastal state played a pivotal role in the war. His experience as a novelist (Winter Fire, 1993, etc.) is also evident here, from the cliffhanger opening all the way through Confederate Colonel William Lamb's plot-teasing final monologue ("He would learn on that day the true strength of what he had created upon these windswept sands and meet the destiny that would be the measure of his life"). The characters, most of them based on actual people, have a regrettable tendency to lapse into history-speak ("The South has an agrarian economy, so every man they put in the field reduces the wealth of that economy"; "As a defense against the full might of the Federal navy, which may appear on that horizon at any moment, these batteries amount to nothing!"), but they are otherwise delightful. We meet sexy female spies, valiant African-American fighters, winsome privateers, sneaky bushwhackers, and a host of scalawags at all levels of command in Richmond and Washington. What drives them into the breach isn't so much an attempt to settle the issues of slavery and secession as it is pride of country, class, blood, and racial origin. Trotter's battle scenes, especially those featuring the amazing (and historically accurate) exploits of Union Naval Commander WilliamCushing and hashish-puffing British blockade runner Augustus Hobart-Hampden, show armed conflict as a gruesome challenge that more often than not brings out the best in those lucky enough to survive. A success both as guts-and-glory melodrama and as a collection of eye-opening true stories from the Civil War. Author tour

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780452284425
Publisher:
Penguin Group (USA)
Publication date:
05/13/2003
Pages:
768
Product dimensions:
5.56(w) x 8.34(h) x 1.57(d)

What People are saying about this

Bevin Alexander
...a fascinating adventure story, made all the more exciting because it's based on truth.

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