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Perry Lentz

Novels; Historical Novels

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1968. The Falling Hills

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Lentz, Perry. 'The Falling Hills', published in 1968 in Great Britain by André Deutsche, hardback, with dustjacket, 468pp, ISBN 0233959793. Very good condition with very good dustjacket (not price-clipped). Price: £22.00, not including p&p, which is Amazon's standard charge (currently £2.75 for UK buyers, more for overseas customers)
1968, André Deutsch
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  • The Falling Hills [top]
    . First published in 1968 in Great Britain by André Deutsch in hardback with dustjacket, 468pp, ISBN 0233959793
    Jacket Design by Eric Thomas
    Original UK retail price: 36 s net (36 shillings)

Storyline [from front dj flap]: The Falling Hills is an epic story from the American Civil War, and its focus is a violent and forgotten battle: the Battle of Fort Pillow. Fort Pillow was a Union garrison on the Mississippi River, north of Memphis in West Tennessee. It was manned by Negroes and renegade whites and commanded by a group of indifferent officers who did not care for efficiency. They were not prepared for the attack that came one mild morning in April 1864. But the Confederate forces under General Forrest had prepared for it. The fort was an abomination. It housed the Negroes who might rape their women and the whites who had betrayed their race. The twelve hundred rebels took the fort in one raging assault, and once inside began to massacre Unionist soldiers, who were drunk and dazed and had already surrendered.
Among those whose lives were caught up in this campaign were a Confederate captain, Hamilton Leroy Acox, and a young Unionist lieutenant, Jonathan Seabury. It is the stories of these two men's lives through the war that lead the way to the battle. Acox at first is reluctant to fight. He is a lawyer with a wife and land and two children dead, and his life needs peace and tending. Seabury is different. He volunteers out of vain glory, and asks to be drafted to a Negro regiment on principle, only to find it is the last resort of the worst elements in the army. The sacrifice he had hoped to make is spoiled, and the end he comes to has no glamour.
The losing of his idealism in the dirt and gore, and the rising of Acox's anger to terrible action at Fort Pillow are the lines that draw together this depp and dramatic picture of the men and motives involved. It is a novel that presents us not only with historical truth but with a lasting image of the true appearance of all war



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