Sunday, May 3, 2009

Booknotes (May '09)

Acquisitions or review copies received this month:

1. Jayhawkers: The Civil War Brigade of James Henry Lane by Bryce Benedict (U. of Oklahoma Press, 2009).

The first modern scholarly history of the eternally controversial Lane Brigade (there's actually another in the works), this might prove to be one of the more groundbreaking studies to be published this year.

2. Commanding Lincoln's Navy: Union Naval Leadership During the Civil War by Stephen R. Taaffe (Naval Institute Press, 2009).

On the surface, this book looks similar in coverage to Symonds's Lincoln Prize co-winner Lincoln and His Admirals, but my initial impression of the impact of Taaffe's scholarship and writing is more favorable.

3. Sherman Invades Georgia: Planning the North Georgia Campaign Using a Modern Perspective by John R. Scales (Naval Institute Press, 2006).

This is a book with a very unusual, but interesting, non-narrative approach to conducting a decision analysis of Sherman's Atlanta Campaign. Written by a retired general, it uses modern planning techniques designed for army officer training, but is also intended for more general consumption.


  1. William Shea's Fields of Blood: The Prairie Grove Campaign (UNCP) is scheduled for publication 23 October...


  2. Yes. If I could have any late 2009 book in my hands now, that would be the one. I hope to interview Shea around the time of the book's release.

  3. I hope Shea's book is as wonderful as his and Hess' on Pea Ridge! That is still one of the best campaign studies I have ever read.


***PLEASE READ BEFORE COMMENTING***: You must SIGN YOUR NAME when submitting your comment. In order to maintain civil discourse and ease moderating duties, anonymous comments will be deleted. Comments containing outside promotions and/or product links will also be removed. Thank you for your cooperation.