Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Review: Scarecrow in Gray, by Barry Yelton
In Scarecrow in Gray, Barry Yelton has artfully captured the harrowing battlefield experiences of a humble and unassuming Southern farmer who joined the Confederacy for no cause other than that of honoring his fellow man. Mr. Yelton paints a vivid picture of a simple man with a powerful spirit, caught up in a complex war that made ghosts of such men.

Francis Yelton is the humble farmer, a peaceable man with a virtuous heart. Francis is driven by love for his family to stay home from the war and to protect them through unusually perilous times. But he is also driven by his conscience to honor the sacrifices of those who gave up the security of home to fight for a higher ideal. While Francis may not fully share the ideals of “The Cause,” he enlists to do his part, that the sacrifices of those who went before him should not be in vain, and that his family should not bear the dishonor of his failure to serve.

My favorite books are those that transport the reader to the scene, and that effectively convey the experiences and emotions of the characters involved. In these things, the author has succeeded admirably. Mr. Yelton has made the horrors of war palpable, and the futility of that war real for us.

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