Item description for Nor the Battle to the Strong: A Novel of the American Revolution in the South by Charles F. Price...
"Nor the Battle to the Strong" is set during the American Revolution. Its story unfolds in Virginia and South Carolina in the late summer of 1781 and covers a pivotal phase of the Revolutionary War that history has unjustly forgotten. The novel follows two intertwined plot lines. One is that of Major General Nathanael Greene, and the second is the story of how Scottish immigrant and runaway indentured servant James Johnson (a maternal ancestor of the author) came to join the Continental Army in Virginia and travel south to join Greene's force in time to participate in the climatic clash at Eutaw Springs.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9.3" Width: 6.4" Height: 1.8" Weight: 2.05 lbs.
Release Date Jul 4, 2008
Publisher Frederic C. Beil Publisher
ISBN 192949033X ISBN13 9781929490332
Availability 0 units.
More About Charles F. Price
Price has enjoyed careers as a journalist, urban planner, management consultant, and Washington lobbyist.
Charles F. Price currently resides in Burnsville, in the state of Washington. Charles F. Price was born in 1938.
Reviews - What do customers think about Nor the Battle to the Strong: A Novel of the American Revolution in the South?
Horses, hardship, horror .... and elusive Victory Sep 10, 2008
With his novel Nor the Battle to the Strong Charles F. Price has earned the stature to stand alongside such noted Revolutionary War authors as Dennis Conrad, John Buchanan, Larry Babits, Robert Morgan, and David McCullough. In this company of noted historians, however, Mr. Price distinguishes himself as perhaps the best "story-teller", as well as the best (if only) pen and ink artist. While his research is impeccable and he has taken great pains to use language common in 18th century America to flesh out the storyline of his tale, that which is most notable about this book is the breadth and depth of the introspective insights offered by his two main characters as they question the very reasons for behaving as they do.
For those readers who are well-read in the "Southern Campaigns" of the American Revolutionary War, and have placed "boots on the ground" at Guilford Courthouse, the Dan River in Halifax County, VA, the Waxhaws, Camden, Hobkirk's Hill, Ninety-Six, and Eutaw Springs, (and for all of you who have yet to visit these sites) this book provides the context for the battles and skirmishes that took place there. Mr. Price weaves first-hand accounts of the people who fought in these actions with such an accurate description of place that the reader is drawn into the fabric of history.
Not interested in geography? More of a people person? Mr. Price fleshes out Nor the Battle to the Strong with believable dialog placed into the mouths of Nathanael Greene, the Baron von Steuben (if you read German), Kosciuszko, "Lighthorse Harry" Henry Lee, William Washington, Otho Holland Williams, Jethro Sumner, Isaac Huger, Francis Marion, Andrew Pickens and a whole host of others. The masterful interplay of plot, people and place are never more evident than in the account of the Council of War that Nathanael Greene convened before the assault on British Troop under Lieutenant-Colonel Alexander Stewart at Eutaw Springs.
For lovers of horse, this book, too, offers a delightful treatment of horses, horsemen, and horsemanship. The author details a view of cavalry life that is wide-ranging, thorough and informative. From a consummate list of every horse-color that might be familiar to an American equestrian, to the descriptions of the animal's conformation, and a thorough treatise on the training of a novice cavalryman, Mr. Price takes us through the Revolutionary War on horseback. The notable cavalrymen William Washington and "Lighthorse" Harry Lee play pivotal roles in this tale, as do the horses upon which the cavalry depended so much.
The only slight drawback I experienced while reading through the chapters were the rather lengthy sentences the author employed to detail his sense of place. They're well-crafted, albeit somewhat time-consuming. This book is not for the faint of heart when it comes to vocabulary, either. Which of you is familiar with the terms haar, caitiff, splatterdash, congeries, mingo, bunter, gabion, fraising, fleches, and pocosin?
I had the chance to address these comments to the author directly. His response:
"But I have to warn you, if long sentences test your patience, you'd best quit reading right now. It's the intentional style of the whole book. You're right that my purpose is to convey a sense of place, but not just of place but also of a very different time and way of thinking and expressing, and in those terms I'm a disciple of the late Patrick O'Brian; he rendered the period of the Napoleonic Wars in its own terms with relentless exactitude, and he expected the reader to care enough to follow him trustingly into that distant past. He expected, and I expect, the reader to do some heavy lifting, just as he did in writing it."
The last few chapters of Nor the Battle to the Strong come as a complete surprise, are somewhat disturbing, and offer an insight into the psychology of war trauma that has been largely overlooked until now. Without giving away the ending, suffice it to say you will be presented with a revelation that is gut-wrenching. And what is most interesting is that the clues are always there for you to see, but the reality still slams home like an aircraft hit on the World Trade Center.
I found this book to be a thoroughly enjoyable read.
"Time and chance happens to them all....." Sep 9, 2008
Historians have documented extensively the most impressive battles and heroic exploits of the American Revolution, but alongside the best-known military leaders, thousands of lesser mortals and their families lived out personal dreams and contributed mightily to the creation of a new country.
This superb historical novel presents General Nathanael Greene and Private James Johnson as their lives in a regiment of the Continental Army lead to the 1781 Battle of Eutaw Springs in South Carolina where fate brings, among the carnage, painful personal realizations for both men.
Price's novel is historically and culturally accurate, and his writing is brilliant as always. (Check out his other marvelous books.) The characters are engaging; the settings are powerful with both beauty and tragedy; and the overall story brings to the reader a deeper understanding of the birth of our great nation and the lives of people who, against great odds, created it.
Learning the "art of butchery." Sep 9, 2008
The action of this novel is seen through the eyes of two remarkable characters: General Nathanael Greene and private James Johnson. Alternately, we view the action from high and low: Greene's lofty perch from which he plots the "chess of war," and then through the astonished eyes of "wee Jamie," a runaway indentured servant who has joined the Continental army, believing it represents safety - a refuge for him and his sister, Libby. While Greene writes effusive letters to politicians and fellow officers, plots campaign strategy and consults with his staff, young Jamie learns the art of butchery and pretends Libby is his wife so that his companions will not pursue her as a sexual companion. Greene envies the dash and glamour of his peers, ponders his lapsed religion (Quakers do not engage in warfare), and yearns for "a place in history;" Jamie devises a plan to "elevate himself" by becoming a member of the First Dragoons.
What then, do these two men have in common? At the crux of Price's novel is a paradox. When Jamie learns that he may well be the direct descendant of a legendary warrior, the Scottish "Wee John, the Crowner's son," he begins to dream of a heroic encounter - an event that will carve his name in the family history. General Greene dares to dream of honor, fame and position ... after his coming victory. For both men, the battle of Eutaw Springs represents a predestined goal. However, for both, the consequences will bring painful revelations.