Wednesday, April 29, 2015

The Last Long Night (Bregdan Chronicles#5)
by Ginny Dye

Published & Release Date: A Voice in the World Publishing, January 8, 2014

Time and setting: 1864-1865 Virginia

Genre: Historical Fiction Romance

Length: 534 pages

Heat Level: 1 Sweet Heart

Rating: 4 Gold Crowns

Description: The power of the Union army brings the South to its knees in surrender, but not until a year of intense pain and violence creates a chasm that may be impossible for the country to bridge. 

Carrie struggles to hold on to hope as the world caves in around her, hanging on to the promise she’s been given. She also finally gets to reveal the secret she has held so close. 

Moses is gravely wounded in battle. 

Aunt Abby faces danger as she gets more deeply involved with women’s rights, and spends time in Washington, D.C. 

Robert’s plantation takes a severe loss, but is saved from burning by an unlikely source. 

Rose continues to thrive in the Contraband Camp and finally has a dream come true. 

Volume # 5 of The Bregdan Chronicles continues the sweeping saga that now encompasses the final year of the American Civil War. 

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Vikki’s Musings

The saga continues in The Last Long Night of the Bregdan Chronicles Book 5. I am sure for the brave men who fought in the Civil War, the entire last year of the war must have felt like one continuous nightmare. What the Rebels endured that last year was beyond anything anyone could have imagined. They suffered one defeat after the other, near starvation, and a brutal winter.

Ms. Dye paints a vivid and graphic picture of the siege of Richmond, along with the fight for the Shenandoah Valley, where Robert’s plantation comes under threat of fire. At times the details are quite painful to read, but this episode is rich with astonishing historical detail. That is what I am enjoying most about this series.

This book opens with Richmond again under attack and Robert Borden in the midst of the fighting. While the south again wins the battle, it is at a heavy cost, one that it can ill afford. Lee sends Robert to the Shenandoah Valley to join Jubal Early. There, another rout occurs that has the Rebels running for their lives, leaving Sherman to burn and destroy one of the last food supplies to Lee’s army.

After the defeat, Robert is given leave to find out if his home is still standing. When he arrives on the hill above his plantation, he watches the Yankees get ready to torch his barns and home with his mother on the front porch. The only thing that saves his plantation is Matthew Justin. He tells the captain in charge that the man who owns the plantation saved his life and helped him escape Libby Prison. This book ends with the surrender at Appomattox and the death of Lincoln.    

While I was fascinated by all the history in this episode, I do feel that most of the characters have become a bit sanctimonious. None of them have any flaws. Carrie stands strong in the face of hardship. Her father has accepted her views toward slavery, and Robert is the perfect confederate officer. No one gets angry at their lot in life, it is not very realistic. While there are moments of high drama, the characters accept everything too easily. Some of the sub-plots were unnecessary in my estimation and did not move the story forward.

Nonetheless, I still enjoyed The Last Long Night and will continue reading the rest of the series for the history alone, and I do still like all the characters and must see how they make it through the reconstruction. Happy reading! 

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