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2008 National Book Award Finalists in Non-Fiction

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First, I’ve added The National Book Foundation to my links (look under “Books” header on right nav bar.

Second, I noticed several history and military-relevant titles on the 2008 National Book Award Finalist list for non-fiction. My congratulations to all of the finalists.

Drew Gilpin Faust
This Republic of Suffering: Death and the American Civil War
Alfred A. Knopf

Annette Gordon-Reed
The Hemingses of Monticello: An American Family
W.W. Norton & Company

Jane Mayer
The Dark Side: The Inside Story of How the War on Terror Turned into a
War on American Ideals

Doubleday

Jim Sheeler
Final Salute: A Story of Unfinished Lives
The Penguin Press


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This Republic of Suffering: Death and the American Civil War

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Pamela Cortland at Alfred A. Knopf Publishing (an imprint of the Knopf Publishing Group at Random House) has given me the opportunity to review on Wig Wags what looks like a fascinating book. I should have it in hand by early next week but wanted to go ahead and make a quick comment.

Death and the American Civil War

Format: Hardcover, 368 pages
On Sale: January 8, 2008
Price: $27.95
ISBN: 978-0-375-40404-7 (0-375-40404-X)

This Republic of Suffering: Death and the American Civil War by Drew Gilpin Faust is a study of how the country came to terms with the 620,000 deaths that resulted from the Civil War. Given my recent posts on death and injury on the battlefield (see here and here), the topic is of considerable interest to me.

It is almost inconceivable to think of losing that many of our countrymen and women today in the cause of any war. The impact at the personal level – among both those who died and those who loved them – is one measure of the war’s magnitude. Another is the enormity of the logistics of dealing with that much death.  Drew G. Faust

The book’s author, Drew Gilpin Faust, holds the Lincoln Professorship of History at Harvard University and was, oh by the way, installed as its president a few months ago as well. You can read more about President Faust here.

She authored five previous books, including Mothers of Invention: Women of the Slaveholding South in the American Civil War, which won the Francis Parkman Prize awarded by the Society of American Historians and the Avery Craven Prize. I’ll be adding President Faust to my “the historians” Page.

More on the book later.