The March: A Novel

The March: A Novel

E.L. Doctorow

Language: English

Pages: 363

ISBN: 0812976150

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


In 1864, Union general William Tecumseh Sherman marched his sixty thousand troops through Georgia to the sea, and then up into the Carolinas. The army fought off Confederate forces, demolished cities, and accumulated a borne-along population of freed blacks and white refugees until all that remained was the dangerous transient life of the dispossessed and the triumphant. In E. L. Doctorow’s hands the great march becomes a floating world, a nomadic consciousness, and an unforgettable reading experience with awesome relevance to our own times.

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many miles behind the advance corps that they couldn’t hear the usual sound of skirmishing as the Rebel cavalry pecked away and fell back and pecked away. There was only the April breeze and the creak of the wagons and the steady clopping of the hoofs on the hard dirt road. But Bert the mule did not like walking directly behind one wagon and in front of another. He kept balking and holding things up behind him. He kept trying to get out of the procession and into the cornfields. When cavalry

Yes, Emily whispered, feeling at this moment that she had revealed something terribly intimate about herself. But supposing we are more a nonhuman form of life. Imagine a great segmented body moving in contractions and dilations at a rate of twelve or fifteen miles a day, a creature of a hundred thousand feet. It is tubular in its being and tentacled to the roads and bridges over which it travels. It sends out as antennae its men on horses. It consumes everything in its path. It is an immense

he’d been sent by his father to a military academy in Göttingen. The experience had taught him to detest drilling and saluting and all the other hierarchical warrior nonsense. That was the phrase he used—she smiled—hierarchical warrior nonsense. A CIVILIAN WAS brought in, a man with a depressed skull fracture. He arrived in the arms of a Negro. He did not belong in a military hospital, as one of the guards had insisted, but the victim’s wife said, The likes of you did this to him, and we are

man. You’ll be fine. Will was cold. His teeth were chattering. He couldn’t tell if he was shivering or accounting the ripples in the road. His sleeve was soaked. He held the arm upright as he lay on the side bench, and with his other hand pressed a finger into the wound to try to hold the blood in. The shanks on this little horse is like toothpicks, Arly shouted. She ain’t made to pull four wheels. You would of done better to get us a mule, like I asked you. On the other hand, it makes things

straight as a proper soldier, though with that strange look in his eyes, like he had seen something alarming on the horizon. Culp had affixed a brace to the back of Will’s head to keep it upright. And the chin strap on the Reb cap was what kept his lower jaw from going slack. You wasn’t this stupid-looking in your life, Arly said to the picture. You had an intelligence, though you did require instruction on a daily basis. But, anyways, I made you a promise to report on your bravery to your

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