Sherman by Agostino Von Hassel and Ed Breslin

Well, as you can tell, I wasn’t any more faithful writing in 2012 than I was in previous years, but boy was 2012 full of some fun and life-changing events. I began reading a blog written by a mom of three children, and each month she shares what books she reads. Let’s just say I have been amazed! I need to read more. I used to (like last week) feel very guilty reading anything other than devotional books or the Bible, because I figured if I had time to read, I ought to be reading the Bible. Well, that blog recently posted a great post about that very topic. There is a different kind of comprehension necessary when reading the Bible versus reading a biography, fiction novel, or non-fiction book. That’s when it hit me that I want to read more and a broader realm.

Last year, I read a decent amount of parenting books and birthing books, I mean I did have a baby, but this year I want to grow in general knowledge too. Will it be a New Year’s resolution that results in me completing one book and starting ten others (and never finishing them), maybe, but so far the book I have finished has been a good one that has encouraged me to keep going, and since I like getting free books to review, here is the most recent book I have finished.

Sherman by Agostino Von Hassell and Ed Breslin was a book documenting “The General,” William Tecumseh Sherman.  I picked this book months ago hoping to expand my reading genres. It has taken me some time to pick it up and actually read it. I started this book Friday and finished it in short order. It was surprisingly very easy to read. I didn’t even know that was possible for history books. I learned so much about the life of Sherman that I didn’t know. I mean I remember from history class about his fiery trek to the sea, but beyond that I couldn’t have told you anything. This book did a great overview of his life in 160ish pages. You learned everything from the fact that William was not his given name, why he got the name Tecumseh, and his lifelong struggles.

General Sherman moved around a lot during his life which was amazing in light of the lack of modern transportation. Steam engines were just entering the market and were responsible for many injuries and deaths for early passengers. So the fact he moved lived in Ohio, Florida, Maryland, New York, California, Louisiana, and I think a few other states was pretty impressive to me.

In this book, the author did a great job of highlighting the inner struggles he had with trying to make his own mark on society, providing for his family, and determining what his lifelong career should be. It’s not often I leave a non-fiction book with facts that I could share with someone, but the author presented the story of General Sherman’s life in such a way that it’s hard to forget his struggles and victories.

And, as a side note, it has to be a great book, because the Sutters of the Gold Rush were mentioned. Did you know General Sherman was who confirmed that there was a Gold Strike in California, and it was because of Gold found on Johann Augustus Sutter’s land? So, if you’re looking for a non-fiction read, I think this would be interesting. I had pretty much said I wouldn’t get another book like this one, but they have a series about many of the great Generals, and I’m more inclined now than I was to get another. I’ll be sure to let you know what I do.


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