The March

The March

A Novel

Paperback - 2006
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8

Doctorow's new novel is set towards the end of the American Civil War and follows General Sherman's epic march with sixty thousand Union troops through Georgia and the Carolinas, one of the major manoeuvres to bring the war to its conclusion. THE MARCH ranges widely over a diverse set of characters - each of whom is brilliantly realised - so that we see the war through the eyes of both white-skinned Pearl (daughter of slave and slave owner) and General Sherman; a deserting confederate who sets himself up as a photographer; a ruthless army surgeon who enjoys his reputation as an amputator; and the two brothers of a brutal slave owner who find themselves in uniforms facing Sherman's forces.
Doctorow's narrative brilliantly blends the intimate and the epic, sweeping the reader along the route of Sherman's notorious march and making us care deeply about each individual's fate.

Publisher: London, Eng. : Abacus, 2006, c2005.
ISBN: 9780349119595
0349119597
Characteristics: 367 pages ;,20 cm.

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RogerDeBlanck Jun 30, 2018

The "march" alluded to in the title is the infamous trek made by Union General William T. Sherman’s army as they drove east across Georgia and north up through the Carolinas during the latter stages of the Civil War. Sherman serves as one of many prominent historical figures explored throughout this sweeping novel. Doctorow’s chronicling of the ravishment of war shows Sherman’s military campaign growing into a kind of massive organism of incalculable human suffering as free slaves, wandering vagabonds, and displaced Southerners join the march. The narrative interweaves several strands of stories that gain momentum as a driving confluence that encapsulate the momentous impact of war on individual lives. Although The March lacks the emotional power of his early works, E.L. Doctorow still proves with this book that he is one of America’s most distinguished writers.

l
Lotushead
Apr 10, 2018

Learn something about the Civil War while you enjoy your read.

d
duane_reads
Feb 14, 2018

Terrific book. I picked it because of my interest in the Civil War, without knowing anything about the author. I think anybody could enjoy Doctorow's poetic prose in this historical novel without knowing much about the real-life characters and events. I loved reading the monologues of General Sherman and other characters.

i
iliveatthelibrary
Aug 29, 2017

I was looking forward to this but it just didn't grab me. I'll try it again later. I want to like it but.....Yeah I'll try again later.

Harriet_the_Spy Oct 05, 2010

Amazing main character who "passes" in many different way: she goes back and forth between appearing as a boy or a girl, as Black or white, and as a child or an adult.

hermlou Jul 13, 2010

Doctorow reports on Sherman's march through the U.S. south at the end of the Civil War. He describes historical figures such as Sherman and Lincoln, but the story is told through individuals such as an army surgeon, a freed slave, a displaced plantation owner, and army deserters. The book does not dwell on violence and gore, to my relief. It dwells on the effect of the war on various parts of the population. Doctorow writes with humor and compassion, and I want to read more of his books.

f
Fancy
Aug 26, 2009

Fantastic!

c
Cabby
Dec 06, 2007

Finalist of the 2006 Pulitzer prize for fiction.

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