Cain at Gettysburg
By Ralph Peters
(Forge Books, Hardcover, 9780765330475, 432pp.)
Publication Date: February 28, 2012
Winner of the American Library Association's W. Y. Boyd Award for Excellence in Military Fiction
Two mighty armies blunder toward each other, one led by confident, beloved Robert E. Lee and the other by dour George Meade. They’ll meet in a Pennsylvania crossroads town where no one planned to fight.
In this sweeping, savagely realistic novel, the greatest battle ever fought on American soil explodes into life at Gettysburg. As generals squabble, staffs err. Tragedy unfolds for immigrants in blue and barefoot Rebels alike. The fate of our nation will be decided in a few square miles of fields.
Following a tough Confederate sergeant from the Blue Ridge, a bitter Irish survivor of the Great Famine, a German political refugee, and gun crews in blue and gray, Cain at Gettysburg is as grand in scale as its depictions of combat are unflinching.
For three days, battle rages. Through it all, James Longstreet is haunted by a vision of war that leads to a fateful feud with Robert E. Lee. Scheming Dan Sickles nearly destroys his own army. Gallant John Reynolds and obstreperous Win Hancock, fiery William Barksdale and dashing James Johnston Pettigrew, gallop toward their fates….
There are no marble statues on this battlefield, only men of flesh and blood, imperfect and courageous. From New York Times bestselling author and former U.S. Army officer Ralph Peters, Cain at Gettysburg is bound to become a classic of men at war.
RALPH PETERS, New York Times bestselling author of The War After Armageddon, is a retired U.S. Army officer; a controversial strategist and veteran of the intelligence world; a journalist who appears frequently in the broadcast media; and a lifelong traveler with experience in over seventy countries on six continents. Peters has studied the Battle of Gettysburg since childhood, when his parents took him on annual pilgrimages to that hallowed ground. Combining years of walking those fields and painstaking research with insight into the souls of generals and privates gleaned from his own military career, Ralph Peters tells this great American tale in a masterful style.
“Surpasses Michael Shaara's classic The Killer Angels...a brilliant portrayal of how the Confederate infantry felt...In fact, brilliant is an adjective one is tempted to wear out in describing this book...”
--Booklist (starred review)
“[A] compelling tale of men at war...Peters's colorful descriptions of harsh army life and the utter chaos of battle are accurate and convincing...”
“Action-packed...vigorous, decisive...Peters is both historically accurate and a well-practiced storyteller [with] a good sense of the language and culture of the time. Among the many strong points of Peters' version is his attention to the immigrant players on the battlefield.”
“Ralph Peters has given us a great treasure! You'll want to keep Cain at Gettysburg long after you've read through it the first time. Visit with the ragged, but proud, veterans of Lee's army; listen to them as they prepare for the fight ahead. You will marvel at this superbly crafted portrait of General George Meade's soldiers in dusty blue, whose courage matched that of their commander. This wonderful saga pulls you right into the ranks of men marching to meet their destiny.”
—John W. Mountcastle, Brigadier General, U.S. Army (ret.), former Army Chief of Military History
“A captivating novel that combines the accuracy of the historian with the gripping prose of a gifted storyteller...spellbinding...”
—Dr. James S. Pula, author of The Sigel Regiment: A History of the 26th Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry: 1862-1865 on Cain at Gettysburg
“Ralph Peters has done the seemingly impossible. He has found a new way to tell the story of Gettysburg and simultaneously restore a great general to his rightful place in our minds and hearts.”
—Thomas Fleming, New York Times bestselling author of The Secret Trial of Robert E. Lee on Cain at Gettysburg
"A great retelling of the Battle of Gettysburg, Cain had my complete attention. Ralph Peters challenges the notion that everything that can be written about this battle has been. His approach is fresh, original, and outstanding in every respect.”
—General Sid Shachnow, U.S. Army Special Forces (ret.)