Praise for The Confederate General Rides North
"Every so often you come across a book you can't put down. A book that makes you forget where you are when you're reading it and sad to finish it. The Confederate General Rides North is that book. With intensive research and an empathetic heart Amanda C. Gable tells a poignant and multi-layered story while masterfully building suspense. Your heart races and breaks throughout this journey of a young girl forced to grow up much too soon. You're in for a treat when you meet Katherine McConnell -- whom you'll end up wanting to adopt. Read this book: you won't soon forget it."
elizabeth flock, new york times bestselling author of me & emma and sleepwalking in daylight
"Meet 11-year-old Katherine McConnell, a whip-smart and enchanting heroine whose imaginary life as a Civil War general helps her navigate her family’s own troubled history and the unpredictable battlefield of adolescence. Gable’s rendering of Kat is note-perfect, and she spins her journey with a deft mix of humor and pathos. The Confederate General Rides North is vibrant, big-hearted, and wholly original. I love this book, and can't recommend it loudly enough."
joshilyn jackson, bestselling author of gods in alabama and the girl who stopped swimming
"I have just traveled the Civil War battlefields of Gettysburg and Manassas with 11-year old Katherine McConnell, the precocious and tenderhearted heroine of The Confederate General Rides North. What a trip it was! With beautiful writing and a plot that stampedes to its conclusion, author Amanda Gable poignantly navigates the bumpy roads of troubled families and the young girls who must endure them. Like the heroes who obsess her, Kat McConnell will take her place in your heart and memory."
betsy carter, author of swim to me and the forthcoming novel the puzzle king
"The Confederate General Rides North is the compelling story of Kat McConnell, an endearing young heroine who survives life on the road with her mother by retreating into her vast knowledge of Civil War history. She reenacts battles and imagines war-torn landscapes in a way that reflect her own life while also offering escape. Amanda Gable is a first-rate storyteller and her portrayal of Kat's psychological survival on this often harrowing journey is moving and memorable."
Jill McCorkle, author of Carolina Moon and Creatures of Habit
"This whimsical – and impressive -- debut novel, with its fresh, original take on a difficult mother-daughter relationship, rings true in every word. Indeed, readers everywhere will love being drawn into Gable's -- and to Katherine's -- oh-so-original world."
Rosemary Daniell, author of Secrets of the Zona Rosa: How Writing (and Sisterhood) Can Change Women’s Lives
Selected Reviews of The Confederate General Rides North
From Publisher's Weekly, June 1, 2009:
"A mother-daughter road trip forms the outline of Gable's debut, but the emphasis of this quietly moving novel is on the daughter's inner journey toward maturity. Eleven-year-old Katherine McConnell's passion for the American Civil War isn't surprising; she's been raised in Marietta, Ga., on stories of her ancestors' bravery during the 'war of northern aggression.' So when, during the hot 1968 summer, Katherine’s mother abruptly proposes the two of them take a trip up the East Coast to collect antiques for her latest business venture, Katherine plots out a route that will take them past as many battlefields as possible. Excited about setting foot into Yankee (read: enemy) territory, Katherine gradually comes to learn the truth behind their trip. Katherine's narration, enriched by vignettes in which the young Rebel recasts her problems as those of a Confederate general, is credibly naïve without seeming precious, while Civil War narratives Katherine constructs add texture and weight, keeping this from becoming another maudlin child-narrated coming-of-age story."
Review from Atlanta Magazine, August, 2009. The Shelf: Teresa Weaver on Georgia Writers
"In this extraordinary debut novel, Marietta native Amanda C. Gable punctuates a young girl’s road trip from hell with the imaginary field notes of a compassionate general. ‘The general considers her good fortune in coming upon a perfect strategic spot to form her battalions. But for some reason her chief aide is behaving erratically.’ Set in the 1960s, eleven-year-old Civil War buff Katherine accompanies her beautiful, emotionally disturbed mother on an antiques-buying drive from Georgia to Maine, getting an unexpected education along the way in the true legacy of her revered South. By the time the mother-daughter trek ends—in Gettysburg, fittingly enough—the girl’s passion for history makes perfect sense. ‘Everything written and drawn there has already happened: its order will never change and I don’t have to guess at how things will turn out.’ Gable writes as Katherine, capturing perfectly how frightening the vast unknown can be to an imaginative child."
Review from Atlanta Creative Loafing, July 20, 2009:
Review from Southern Voice, July 24, 2009:
Article on AJC Inside Access Blog, August 12, 2009:
from Atlanta Journal-Constitution, August 16, 2009:
from The New York Times, August 20, 2009:
from The Anniston Star, Anniston, AL, Sept. 21, 2009: