Ante Antietam

Michael Irwin

  • Confederates by Thomas Keneally
    Collins, 427 pp, £5.75, October 1980, ISBN 0 00 222141 1
  • Just Above My Head by James Baldwin
    Joseph, 597 pp, £6.95, October 1980, ISBN 0 7181 1764 6
  • Winter Doves by David Cook
    Secker, 213 pp, £4.95, October 1980, ISBN 0 436 10673 6
  • All Girls Together by Paula Neuss
    Duckworth, 141 pp, £5.95, November 1980, ISBN 0 7156 1454 1

Historical fiction is difficult to write, and often unrewarding to read, because it declines so readily into fictionalised history. Famous men utter quotations, strike familiar postures and reach predestined conclusions. Descriptions of uniforms, weapons and furnishings clog the narrative. The novel becomes a farrago of information.

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