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MonkeyNotes-The Killer Angels by Michael Shaara
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PLOT

The book’s action takes place over four sections: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. With each section Shaara shifts the battle’s advantage. After the armies establish their position in the Monday section, the Union has a decisive advantage in its hold over the town. But by the end of the next section (Wednesday) the Confederacy has taken the upper hand and forced the Union troops to retreat to the hills south of Gettysburg. But by the end of the Thursday section the Union again looks to be the victor after it repels Lee’s flank attacks. This back-and-forth advantage adds to the tension of the final section, in which the reader will discover which side will emerge victorious from the engagement as a whole. Of course nearly all readers know that the Union will repel Pickett’s charge, but Shaara’s back-and-forth method of making the Union seem on the brink of victory, then the Confederacy, and then the Union again makes the book more suspenseful.


In the final section (Friday) Shaara breaks from his pattern (Union advantage, Confederate advantage, Union advantage, Union advantage) and tells of the Union victory.

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MonkeyNotes-The Killer Angels by Michael Shaara
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