The Campfire Boys tells a story that’s never really been told in fiction before—of Civil War camp entertainers. A book filled with high spirits and hilarity, it is also a book of extremely accurate history, telling the story of the Eastern Theater of the war and, in particular, a Georgia unit called Cobb’s Legion Infantry. The novel is the story of the three Blackshear brothers—Jack, Michael, and Henry—and how they turned a boyhood love of performing in their Georgia hometown of Branton into a one of the most famous campfire acts of the Civil War. Much more, though, it’s a book of war and its consequences and how we try to turn away from it with entertainment. In the end, the book is poignant and moving, hilarious and epic. It is the story of why the men who fought for both sides tried to keep their humanity alive in the midst of the most vile inhumanity imaginable.
Hardback, Mercer University Press, 2009