As a long-time student of the American Civil War, I was delighted when Osprey released two ACW tactics books last year. While ELI 171: American Civil War Railroad Tactics and ELI 174 American Civil War Guerrilla Tactics are both good reads (with some terrific photos), they just whetted my appetite.

A few weeks ago, as I was poking through my local Waterstones, I came across The Blood Crucible of Courage: Fighting Methods and Combat Experience of the American Civil War by Brent Nosworthy. Surprised that such a weighty tome on the American Civil War made it onto the shelves of a British bookstore, I grabbed it.

(Have you ever had that experience in the book store - you see exactly what you want, so you actually look both ways and make sure that no one else is sneaking up in an attempt to grab the same book?)

I\'m only about a third of the way through the book so far. Hey, it is 752 pages! I\'ve already learned so much stuff about the American Civil War that I had never considered before. For example, it is well known that green troops during the American Civil War tended to fire high (over the heads of their enemies), but I never really questioned the reason behind it. Now I know.

So, if you are looking for a BIG, crunchy read about the War Between the States, might I humbly suggest this one: