Press and Praise

Stonewall Goes West

Press Clips

Columbia, TN The Daily Herald: Columbia and Maury County play role in Civil War book, Stonewall Goes West (July 2013)


“It’s no easy task to accurately depict individual personalities, let alone write believable fictional conversations and interactions between them; nonetheless, the author excels at both.” — Dr. Mathew Lively, author of Calamity at Chancellorsville

“Thomas’ story is highly readable and highly entertaining. [Jeff] Shaara could use a lesson on pacing from Thomas.” — Prof. Chris Mackowski, author of Chancellorsville: Crossroads of Fire and The Dark

Mother Earth, Bloody Ground

A fast-paced and entertaining read for alternate history fans, civil war enthusiasts, and Sherman and Jackson aficionados.” — Dr. Matthew Lively

7 Responses to “Press and Praise”

  1. Steve Primm says:

    Thoroughly enjoy the read of Stonewall goes West. As a retired Army Officer i found the battle descriptions believable and accurate. I also think you captured the personalities of the lead characters exceptionally well, and in doing so presented a very real understanding of the difficulties the Army of Tennessee was forced to try to overcome. Look forward to your future works.

  2. LIonel Raymond says:

    FULL DISCLOSURE….I have lived in Manassas for 40 years, 8 ON the Bristow/Kettle Run battlefield, literally on Anderson’s late afternoon October 14th line, at Perry Brigade. I also volunteer for the Battlefield as a guide.
    The concept of what would have happened if Jackson lived is reasonable. Where your description of the “new” October14th battle breaks down is the assumption that Hays and Webb would have been taken in the flank and defeated. Both were excellent generals with considerable experience. There troops were not rookies, both have stood the test of the High Water Mark at Gettysburg. The attached artillery of Brown, Ames and Arnold were second to none (the actual battle proving all of this). Hays would have, at the first inclination of a strike at his left flank, refused his line against the east side of the rail road and (as at the Battle of Bristoe Station {BBS}) mowed down the attacking Confederates. Webb would have held his position on the south side (high ground) of Kettle Run. Warren would have sent for Bufford, three miles east with the wagons, and struck Early on his right flank on the north side of Kettle Run. And followed up with a “roll up” of the Confederate right using Heath and Mallon most likely as they were the lead brigades of Warren’s deployment. Union artillery would have ruled the field from the extended high ground behind Kettle Run to the south.

    NOW…IF Jackson had won as you depicted, he, nor Lee, would not have gone into “winter Quarters” (page 42). The whole purpose of Lee’s REAL move against Meade was to bring Meade to battle. The reality is that he did just that; lost and was forced to withdrawn. Using your premise of Jackson and victory, Lee/Jackson would have immediately turned north to engage Sykes’ returning Corps. With A.P Hill fresh and aggressive {BBS} Jackson would have crossed Broad Run and hit Sykes on the plains ether south of Manassas or north Manassas, where he had defeated a Union Division prior to the 2nd Battle of Manassas. You confirm this type of action on page 49 in Jackson’s conversation with Davis. “…and inflict defeat in detail upon it.”
    This move MIGHT have drawn Meade out of Centerville to assist Sykes. A second Gettysburg in and around Manassas.
    In my tours of {BBS}, I state that if Lee had his way and Hill not blundered, the Battle of Bristoe Station would have been that Second Gettysburg. The ground is ideal for it.

  3. T JEFF MOORE says:

    Please let the South win. Its really not alternative history when the Yankees win. been there done tat. Civil war alternative civil war history is my passion. Some are great some are adequate Most are a pile of shit. Turledove is the dodoerer in chief . Please I have an idea. If we ever have time to talk I will share it with you. a little> Lee after Gettysburg goes South instead of Longstreet. Bragg is sacked. Chattanooga never happened because Lee hit the city the day following Chickamuga. sp / He destroys Roscran’s Army ,invades Tenn and keeps Grant in Tenn. Lee goes back for the Overland Campaign and whips the Yankees at the Wilderness. details I’ll keep to myself. Jeff Moore What do you think. Don’t steal my idea… please answer

    • RET says:

      Sorry, but no spoilers about my conclusion!

      As for Lee going South for Chickamauga, I have read a scenario about that, although right now I can’t remember where. Another one is in Peter Tsouras’s anthology, where Bragg is wounded after the battle and Longstreet takes over to exploit the aftermath.

  4. David Stigall says:

    i love your books. Please let the South win. I am a native Kentuckian whose people fought for the Gray. Can you put the orphan brigade in your last novel? It would be great to have the Orphans serve under a truly great Army commander. Thank you.

    • rethomas says:

      Funny you should mention that, David. There is a brief appearance by the Orphan Brigade in the Jackson vs. Thomas battle I’m putting the finishing touches on now.

      I’m a native Kentuckian too. In writing this trilogy, I realized how much I would loved to have made more use of Kentucky… but by 1864 that absolutely was not in the realm of plausibility. I eventually settled on our sister state of Tennessee for my “grunt” characters.

    • rethomas says:

      Since you mention it, I have a brief mention of the Orphan Brigade in my Jackson vs. Thomas battle. I’m a native Kentucky too.

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