Review of the Michael Shaara historical novel, The Killer Angels

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Each student is to complete a book review of the Michael Shaara historical novel, The Killer Angels. The review is to be between 5-6 pages in length. See your syllabus for due date.

The content of the review must include:
- An introduction and thesis that includes an explanation of Shaara’s goal or purpose in writing this historical novel.
- A narrative that fully analyzes the following topics and questions:
1.Why does General Longstreet doubt his own spy’s report of the Union Army’s

advance toward Confederate troops in Pennsylvania?

2. As John Buford tracks the Confederate Army, he stops to wave at a Rebel officer. Why would he greet an enemy in this way?
3. What is Arthur Fremantle’s view of the Confederacy, and how does it impact

his interpretation of the events at Gettysburg?

4. How would you assess the actions of Joshua Chamberlain during the second

day of the battle? Why is he such an important figure in the novel?

5. How could Hancock and Armistead, on opposite sides, maintain such a close


6. Why did officers under Lee want J.E.B. Stuart court-martialed?
7. In your analysis, what were the merits (pros and cons) of Lee’s decision to

allow “Pickett’s Charge”.

8. Why is Longstreet so reluctant to attack on both July 2 and July 3? To what

extent was he responsible for the final outcome?

- A conclusion that wraps up the book review and includes a final analysis of the significance of the Battle of Gettysburg in the larger framework of the American Civil War.

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