CliffsNotes Shaara's The Killer Angels

CliffsNotes Shaara's The Killer Angels

CliffsNotes Shaara's The Killer Angels

CliffsNotes Shaara's The Killer Angels

Synopsis

The original CliffsNotes study guides offer expert commentary on major themes, plots, characters, literary devices, and historical background. The latest generation of titles in this series also feature glossaries and visual elements that complement the classic, familiar format.With CliffsNotes on The Killer Angels, you gain insight into the novel, which tells the story of the Battle of Gettysburg from the points of view of four main characters. Get a glimpse of the realities of war, with its losses and tragedies, and the motivations and deep emotions of the men there.This study guide carries you through this terrible and bloody event by providing chapter summaries and critical analyses. You'll also gain insight into life on the battlefield, the problems that officers and soldiers faced, how decisions were made, and the effect of those decisions. Other features that help you study include Character analyses of major players A character map that graphically illustrates the relationships among the characters Critical essays and theme discussions A review section that tests your knowledge Glossaries of key words and termsClassic literature or modern modern-day treasure - you'll understand it all with expert information and insight from CliffsNotes study guides.

Excerpt

Summary

Harrison is a spy hired by General Longstreet. Working behind enemy lines, he discovers important changes in the location, strength, and leadership of the Union Army. He has identified some of the units and determined where they are going and how fast they are moving. Though it is raining and almost dark, a dangerous way to approach a Confederate camp with its sentries, he does so anyway, feeling the message cannot wait.

Harrison’s reception is marked by suspicion and disdain, as various Confederate officers question the validity of the spy and his information. Even Longstreet struggles with whether to trust him. The deciding factors are the nature of the news he brings and the lack of any concrete information from General J.E.B. Stuart. Stuart is supposed to be the Confederate Army’s eyes and ears, but he has failed to contact Lee for several days. In Stuart’s absence, Longstreet has no choice but to take a chance that Harrison is telling the truth. He brings Harrison to see General Lee.

Harrison gives his information to Lee and is then dismissed. Lee and Longstreet privately discuss what they have learned, Stuart’s lengthy absence, and the implications of Meade as the new Union commander. Lee, though concerned about moving “on the word of a paid spy,” orders the army to Gettysburg and the ultimate showdown with the Union Army.

Commentary

Several things are established in this first chapter: the prevailing attitudes in Southern society, character personalities and relationships, major story conflicts, and the style and strength of Shaara’s writing.

The major ruling attitudes in the South are gentility, nobility, and honor. The commanders behave as gentlemen, and one’s honor is more important than one’s life. Battle is a means to glory in the South; it is . . .

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