Saturday, 22 September 2012

Review: The Bucktail Brothers of the Fighting 149th

Times were hard on families during the Civil War years. In The Bucktail Brothers of the Fighting 149th, the Cole family’s barn burns down to the ground. Money is tight and they don't know where they are going to get the money to rebuild the barn, until their sons Henry and Willie Cole decide to join the 149th Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry lead by Lieutenant Colonel Walton Dwight. Their mother is distraught at the thought of her two teenage sons going off to war. Their father felt that way at first but the $100 cash for the boys joining would help raise a new barn and keep the farm going for awhile.

Henry and Willie say goodbye to their parents and head off with their infantry. They quickly learn the ways of being a solider, even though Henry is a little cocky at times and Willie is stubborn. The two brothers become part of the Pennsylvania Bucktails that fought on the fields of Gettysburg. Their fellow soldiers fell dead and others are wounded, but with great courage the boys fought forward.

I love anything about the Civil War and reading book one in The Bucktail series was a wonderful treat for me. The book is aimed for middle graders and young adults, but adults can enjoy the historical accuracy of it. I felt for Henry and Willie as they are far too young to be in the middle of a battlefield. The majority of the photos throughout the book are of real Civil War reenactor, which gives you an idea of how people dressed during the Civil War. This is a wonderful book for kids to read and it should be a mandatory to read in school classes that are studying the Civil War. Kids will be instantly interested in the Cole brothers because they are about the same age. I recommend The Bucktail Brothers of the Fighting 149th to all readers.

About the Authors:

William P. Robertson graduated from Mansfield University in 1972 with a BS in English. Since college, he has worked in factories, taught high school English, and run a successful house painting business. He began freelancing short stories, poetry, and articles in 1978, and his work has now appeared in over 500 magazines in the U.S., Canada, England, Scotland, Ireland, Wales, Romania, Australia, New Zealand, and Malaysia. He has also published eleven poetry collections, two audio books of horror verse, four volumes of short stories, and eleven historical fiction novels. In his spare time Bill enjoys photography, trout fishing, deer hunting, and Civil War reenacting. He belongs to the Company I Bucktail unit of McKean County in Pennsylvania. For more information about Bill's writing, visit his website at The author has recently finished his first Viking novel entitled THIS ENCHANTED LAND: THE SAGA OF DANE WULFIN. The book was co-written with Fiona Ingram of South Africa and features artwork by Bradford, Pennsylvania artist, David Cox. Learn more at

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