Dear Mr. Crane,
As a Civil War junkie, I thank you, Mr. Crane, for opening my
eyes to what the everyday soldier went through and the fears they
faced. I have read several books on the generals and decision
makers of the Civil War. This is the first book that I have read
from the standpoint of an everyday soldier.
At first when Henry was a coward, I felt for him. At some point,
I may have to serve my country as Henry did. War is no game, and
this book helped me see this. I believe during a war anyone, including
myself, would feel sick and nauseous. Killing a person would not
be easy for me; they would have families that care and deeply
love them. When I think about what I would do in a war, I do not
know if I would be able to face the bullets and missiles and may
act cowardly. At the beginning of the war, Henry also acted cowardly.
I think, as in the case of Henry, that I
would be toughened after a bit of time in the war. The other side
of Henry that appears in the later stages of the book, I believe,
would also appear in me.
Henry loved his country, and I do too. Henry, leading his regiment
in the charge against the enemy, became a hero instead of a coward.
I believe that a person who has the right motives for being in
a war will not act cowardly for an extended period. Fear must
be overcome, and, as Henry did, one must be able to fight for
their country regardless of the hardships. Henry loved his country
and at the end of the story was willing to die for it. He overcame
fear and was able to help his regiment and to some extent, his
This book was especially meaningful considering the current events.
One does not know how long this present war may last. My generation
may have to go to war. This book showed me a kind of courage that
our countrymen will need as they fight this war. It is actually
to an extent frightening, but as Henry did, we must be able to
overcome this fear.
Thank you, Mr. Crane, your book was insightful and helped me
understand better what the soldiers of the United States are going
through. It showed me the horror of a war and taught me to appreciate
more what the soldiers who fight to defend my freedom are doing.
It has encouraged me to be brave and not cowardly during this
Geoffrey W. Locher