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MonkeyNotes-The Killer Angels by Michael Shaara
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MONDAY, JUNE 29, 1863 (PART I)

"Monday," the first and shortest of the bookís four sections, introduces the reader to the circumstances directly before fighting begins. The Confederate spy tells Lee of the nearby Union brigades and Lee decides to make towards the town of Gettysburg; Chamberlain successfully adopts the mutineers thrown upon his Union division and continues to march north; Bufordís Union cavalry runs into "blind" Confederate infantry just north of town and establishes a defensive position; and Longstreetís Confederate infantry makes their way east to get involved in the fledgling Gettysburg conflict.

THE SPY (Chapter 1 of Part I)

By using a spy character, Shaara gives the reader information about the "starting points" of both armies and introduces Longstreet (who, along with Chamberlain, is one of the two main protagonists in the book).

Harrison, a spy hired by Longstreet, discovers nearby Union troop movement and reports back to the Confederate camp. His information--which is crucial because the Rebel infantry has been left "blind" on account of Stuartís absence--means that the Union army is pursuing the Confederate forces into Pennsylvania.

Harrison approaches the Confederate camp during the rainy night and is treated with disdain by the sentries. Longstreet receives the spyís report but isnít sure whether or not to trust him. Because the absence of cavalry has made the situation desperate, Longstreet decides he must trust Harrison and leads the spy to Lee. Harrison repeats the report to Lee--adding that Meade had replaced Hooker as head of the Union army--and is dismissed. Lee and Longstreet discuss Harrisonís news, Stuartís absence, and Meade. Lee considers his options and then orders the army to march to Gettysburg, where he hopes to destroy the Union forces.


Point of View

3 rd person omniscient past tense

In this chapter Shaara uses third person omniscient, as he does for the entire book. But this chapter and the following chapters break with the foreword in that they are written in the past tense and are clearly from a participantís subjective perspective (the Chamberlain chapter is from Chamberlainís perspective, etc).

STYLE

Speech imitation & Shakespeare allusions

Shaara continues with his terse style of short sentences that mimic the thought process or speech: "Where was Stuart? No escort now." (p.5) Shaara uses parallel construction ("having spread panic and rage and despair through the North" p.xv) and repetition ("So finding the headquarters was not the problem. The problem was riding through a picket line in the dark" p.4) to accentuate his writing and to make it even more like human thought or speech.

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MonkeyNotes-The Killer Angels by Michael Shaara
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