Like a good friend visiting for the weekend, the Wheel of Time has turned ’round to Teaser Tuesday.
My library’s been on a roll lately. This week I found Joanne Freeman’s The Field of Blood. I started reading it last night and made it to page 45 before falling asleep. It wasn’t the book’s fault; I wasn’t feeling well and had taken some medicine that ended up doing a number on me.
The Goodreads Blurb:
The previously untold story of the violence in Congress that helped spark the Civil War
In The Field of Blood, Joanne Freeman recovers the long-lost story of physical violence on the floor of the U.S. Congress. Drawing on an extraordinary range of sources, Freeman shows that the Capitol was rife with conflict in the decades before the Civil War. Legislative sessions often were punctuated with mortal threats, canings, flipped desks, and all-out slugfests. When debate broke down, congressmen drew pistols and waved Bowie knives. One representative even killed another in a duel. Many were beaten and bullied in an attempt to intimidate them into compliance, particularly on the issue of slavery.
These fights didn’t happen in a vacuum. Freeman’s dramatic accounts of brawls and thrashings tell a larger story of how fisticuffs and journalism, and the powerful emotions they elicited, raised tensions between North and South and led toward war. In the process, she brings the antebellum Congress to life, revealing its rough realities–the feel, sense, and sound of it–as well as its nation-shaping import. Funny, tragic, and rivetingly told, The Field of Blood offers a front-row view of congressional mayhem, and sheds new light on the careers of John Quincy Adams, Henry Clay, and other luminaries, as well as introducing a host of lesser-known but no less fascinating men. The result is a fresh understanding of the workings of American democracy and the bonds of Union on the eve of their greatest peril.
The Truly Random Number Generator sends us to page 178:
The Whig press branded Pierce the "hero of many a well fought Bottle," published a miniature "book" titled The Military Service of General Pierce, and smirked at how he fainted on the battlefield (twice) during the Mexican War, in one case because of a "sense-taking" groin injury.
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How far would you go to uncover the truth? What would you do to protect your family? Is anything as it seems?
It’s hard to put my thoughts about this book into words. It has stayed with me even a week after finishing it.
Read it and see for yourself.
What are you reading today?