I found this tag by Vivalabooklife ages ago. I saw it and immediately wanted to do it, but only now have I finally gotten around to it. It was Twenty Øne Piløts after all. And you must know how much I love their music.Read More »
Rating: 4/5 stars.
I read this quite a few months ago for school. Then school told me to review a nonfiction book I’ve read. I really enjoyed this one so here’s a review.
“In these memoirs, after the lapse of twenty years, we propose to fight our “battles o’er again.””
This is certainly what Sam R. Watkins does. He tells his story of joining the First Tennessee Regiment, Company H, to fight for the Confederacy. He recounts their victories and their defeats. As one of seven of the original recruits to survive all of their battles from Shiloh to Nashville, it is a unique story. He tells the story not of a general or lieutenant, but of the average private and his thoughts on the war.
I really loved this story. It made the Civil War just come alive. The battles were so real and very bloody. There was such sad and dreadful memories. It was really shocking. So many people died either from being killed in battle, battle wounds, or infection in the wounds. The author does describe some very literally torn up people, but I loved the reality of it. He is recounting what he saw onto paper.
But this book doesn’t just dwell on the battles. There is also a good mix of humor which included lots of humorous stories. He tells of letters from home, staying at people’s house, and visiting hospitals. He tells the true thoughts of the foot soldiers. How there were certain leaders that they despised. How, at times, they just wished for the war to be over and they didn’t care who won anymore. How the Confederate soldiers would chat from where they were positioned to the Union soldiers across the way.
This showed me that a lot of people signed up for war thinking it would be exciting, an adventure, and they expected it to be over soon. Once they saw the reality of it, most of them didn’t want to fight anyone. But they were brave enough to not desert, because they would be executed or hanged if caught. They fought, even as they knew (towards the end of the war) that they were losing.
The writing style was different. It was first in person, but in past tense. I liked it though. It felt so much more true. Like an old man telling his story to you.
This was such a rich book and so full of life. I’ll recommend this book to anyone who can handle the bloody descriptions, because it is really worth the read. It opens your eyes to the truth of war.
Rating: 5/5 stars.
Woah… Where do I even start? What should I say? This book was amazing. One of the best, if not the best, nonfiction books that I have ever read.
When I first started this, I felt pretty sure that I was going to like it. I just wasn’t sure if it was going to be one of those books that I have to almost force myself to read or if I was just going to start reading and not want to stop. Well…I didn’t want to stop.
Throughout this whole book, there was such a realness to it. It felt so harsh, rough, and real. There was some language and definitely a lot of violence. There was even some mentioning of sexual stuff, I was kind of surprised. But I guess that’s normal for the world.
All the people were really interesting. There was at least a little something told about everyone. I must say that I got a bit confused about some of them because there was just so many. Even though it got a bit confusing, but it didn’t effect my understanding of the story.
Louis’s childhood was very entertaining. Man, he wasn’t the best of kids, but it was the truth. I loved it. It was very neat to see what the early twentieth century was like. Then how he got to the Olympics at such a young age. It was so incredible and seemed absolutely impossible, but he made it. He showed such perseverance and determination. He was a very fast runner.
Louis joins the military and all goes well, except for some terrifying instances, of course. World War II has never felt more real. There is nothing like reading or listening to a first person account of a war to begin realize what war is actually like, even if you’ll never truly know what’s it’s like until you’ve been there. Louis and his mates’ fears, horrors, and terrors became my fears, horrors, and terrors. It was so real.
What Louis survived through only to get captured be the Japanese…is unreal. I can hardly believe it. This book can really give you a fear of sharks. Then the way he was treated by the Japanese was gut wrenching. I can’t even begin to imagine the pain and starvation and everything else he went through. It was inhuman how he was treated. He and so many others. And it just got worse and worse…and worse. He was kept prisoner for about two years and he survived! He showed so much resilience. It was heartbreaking to see what his family was going through at the same time. It must’ve been so stressful for them.
Last of all, his conversion story was fascinating. Such an amazing thing to read about. The ending was beautiful and filled with hope and joy and a tinge of sadness.
I’m recommending this to older teens and up. I think everyone should take the time to read this. It was so good, but horrible too, if you know what I mean. It’s a incredible true story that you won’t soon forget.