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Confederates in the Attic
Confederates in the Attic: Dispatches from the Unfinished Civil War | Tony Horwitz
37 posts | 40 read | 43 to read
National BestsellerWhen prize-winning war correspondent Tony Horwitz leaves the battlefields of Bosnia and the Middle East for a peaceful corner of the Blue Ridge Mountains, he thinks he's put war zones behind him. But awakened one morning by the crackle of musket fire, Horwitz starts filing front-line dispatches again this time from a war close to home, and to his own heart.Propelled by his boyhood passion for the Civil War, Horwitz embarks on a search for places and people still held in thrall by America's greatest conflict. The result is an adventure into the soul of the unvanquished South, where the ghosts of the Lost Cause are resurrected through ritual and remembrance.In Virginia, Horwitz joins a band of 'hardcore' reenactors who crash-diet to achieve the hollow-eyed look of starved Confederates; in Kentucky, he witnesses Klan rallies and calls for race war sparked by the killing of a white man who brandishes a rebel flag; at Andersonville, he finds that the prison's commander, executed as a war criminal, is now exalted as a martyr and hero; and in the book's climax, Horwitz takes a marathon trek from Antietam to Gettysburg to Appomattox in the company of Robert Lee Hodge, an eccentric pilgrim who dubs their odyssey the 'Civil Wargasm.'Written with Horwitz's signature blend of humor, history, and hard-nosed journalism, Confederates in the Attic brings alive old battlefields and new ones 'classrooms, courts, country bars' where the past and the present collide, often in explosive ways. Poignant and picaresque, haunting and hilarious, it speaks to anyone who has ever felt drawn to the mythic South and to the dark romance of the Civil War.From the Trade Paperback edition.
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review
Pedrocamacho
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Mehso-so

I‘m very conflicted about this book. Part of me is frustrated by the screeds and deliberate falsehoods of the neo-Confederates that Horowitz interviews. Another part of me thinks this book is prescient in the perspectives it presents, many of which resemble the politics of today. Part thinks this book should have been shorter. Another part thinks it should have included more African-American voices. It‘s just turtles all the way down for me.

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ONH
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“Northerners say, ‘Forget the war, it‘s over.‘ But they don‘t have the family Bibles we do, filled with all these kinfolk who went off to war and died. We‘ve lost so much.” - Chp 2, Cats of the Confederacy🐱

Tony Horwitz explored the southern US in the 90s and wrote this (so-far) excellent book about today‘s southerners who are still living the Civil War. Tensions have obviously heightened between the 90s and now, but this is still relevant.

Leftcoastzen Pretty kitty!😻 4mo
5 likes1 comment
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ferskner
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Pickpick

I saw Tony Horwitz on book tour a week before he died, and I'm so grateful I was able to hear someone so fascinating speak before he was gone. I decided then that this masterpiece had been on my shelf unread for too long. It's astounding that it was written 20 years ago, since literally everything is the same.

#pop19 #bookaboutahobby #readharder #bookbyajournalistoraboutjournalism @bookriot

LeahBergen I adored this book. ❤️ 4mo
ferskner @LeahBergen isn't it the greatest? I didn't expect to find it so unputdownable. 4mo
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Librarybelle
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Pickpick

Though published 20 years ago, this book is still timely and relevant to today‘s struggles. So well written...Horwitz was amazing. A must read!

This is still one of my favorite books. I think I gravitate to this, growing up near and now working in a Civil War town that has seen commercial development in the last 20-25 years. Most people in town are sick of the war, and yet the legacy still lingers.

Thanks to my fellow #Horwitz readers!

kspenmoll Sounds like a great book! (edited) 7mo
Blaire This book is so good!! My husband is reading his latest right now. Such a loss! 7mo
Librarybelle @kspenmoll It is a really good book! 7mo
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Librarybelle @Blaire Agreed...such a loss! 7mo
CareBear I just finished today. Thanks for hosting, I really enjoyed this and his book has prompted me to read further. 7mo
Librarybelle @CareBear Thank you for joining! 7mo
kspenmoll You choose wonderful reads. Keep me posted please!😘 7mo
ferskner I'm so jealous that you live that close to Gettysburg. This book made me want to visit ALL the Civil War sites, but maybe not with R.L. Hodge. 7mo
Librarybelle @ferskner One of my staff knows Hodge! I told him he needs to do a program for the library! I‘ve actually heard him speak, and he‘s interesting. But, totally agree visiting a battlefield with him would not be the best thing to do. 7mo
ferskner OH MY GOSH!!!! 7mo
75 likes10 comments
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Librarybelle
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“‘I am who I am, geographically and politically, because of what happened here.‘”

In this passage, Horwitz visits Shiloh, one of the deadliest battles of the Civil War, on its anniversary and walks the sacred ground. Along the way, he meets others who come back every year to trace their ancestors‘ footsteps. This quote from one of his interviewees is so profound to me. #horwitz

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ferskner
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Finishing up the #horwitz buddy read on the last day of the month. Review to come later, but I have absolutely loved every second of this book. A new favorite. @Librarybelle @Hoopiefoot @CareBear @cathysaid

Librarybelle I‘m really hoping to finish this up tonight as well! 7mo
cathysaid I had to return it to the library before I finished, but will check out again when it is available. I read the first few chapters and really enjoyed it.
7mo
50 likes2 comments
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CareBear
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I probably won‘t finish this tomorrow but I‘m amazed how timely this is 20 years after publication. I‘m really enjoying it so far! #horwitz

Librarybelle I‘ve been amazed too about how timely it is...still the same issues from 20 years ago 7mo
ferskner I forget every moment of reading it that it wasn't recently published. 7mo
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Librarybelle
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I completely forgot that Tony Horwitz almost got into a fight at a bar! So scary...

I‘m enjoying my reread of this book. I‘m reading little bits at a time, but still hope to finish it by Sunday. #Horwitz

ferskner Haha I just read that part last night! It was scary! 7mo
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cathysaid
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True story. Those were the longest 18 months of my life. So yeah...many in the South still commemorate the dates.

#Horwitz

@Librarybelle @CareBear @ferskner

LauraJ I experienced culture shock big time when I lived in New Orleans. Felt like I had gone back in time 50 years. 8mo
Librarybelle Thank you for sharing your experience...so sad (edited) 8mo
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cathysaid @OrangeMooseReads @LauraJ @Librarybelle I‘ve lived in the south all my life (in GA, NC, SC, TN and AL) and I love it here (and I‘m loving this book because I can relate to much of it). But sometimes it seems a few of my fellow southerners worship history rather than appreciate and learn from it. 8mo
Tamra Oh my! 😑 I don‘t even know where to begin, partly because I think anything said would be meaningless for those who subscribe to the sentiment you posted. 8mo
Trashcanman This a sad sad sad and sad state of affairs. I think we should force them to eat anti-freeze while they watch women walk into abortion clinics. 8mo
48 likes6 comments
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Librarybelle
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Please feel free to join @CareBear , @ferskner and I as we read this book during the month of June. We‘ll post our thoughts throughout the month, so it‘s completely read at your own pace. I‘m going to use #horwitz in my posts, in memory of the author, who recently passed away.

cathysaid I will try to join! I haven‘t read anything by this author but would love to check him out after all the amazing coverages since his recent death. 8mo
Librarybelle Hope you will be able to join, @cathysaid ! 8mo
Hoopiefoot This is a great idea! I‘m going to try to join in—I loved this book and was so sad to hear of his passing. 8mo
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Librarybelle You‘re welcome to join if you can, @Hoopiefoot ! It‘s one of my favorite books, so it seems fitting to re-read after the sad news. 8mo
Leftcoastzen It‘s a great book! I was so sad about his sudden passing. 8mo
CareBear Looking forward to it! 🤓 8mo
ferskner Thanks for reminding me! 8mo
71 likes9 comments
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Librarybelle
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I can remember reading this book for the first time - I was in college, and I was sick. I had to read this for one of my Civil War classes, and due to my illness, I was home, curled up on a rocking chair. What a powerful story! At times scary, this book really spoke to me and the passions people feel about history. It‘s one of my favorite books. I was so sad to hear the news (and even worse when colleagues had no idea who I was chattering about).

Librarybelle I may have to re-read this soonish. Anyone want to read along? 8mo
CareBear I would! 🙋‍♀️ I just picked this up at our last Litsy meetup swap! 8mo
LeahBergen I know! So sad. 😢 8mo
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JanuarieTimewalker13 Wow! Had no idea!! He spoke at my college when John Brown came out. So sad!! This book sounds very interesting. Had no idea he was married to Geraldine Brooks! 8mo
Graywacke Wait... ?? oh 😔 8mo
AmyG I read this today. 😪 8mo
Leftcoastzen Oh man, so sad , I read this book years ago , thought it was so good, Too young ! 8mo
Librarybelle @CareBear Would you like to read it in June? We can do a casual read of it and post thoughts and quotes. 8mo
CareBear @Librarybelle sure that sounds great 😊 8mo
Librarybelle Wonderful, @CareBear ! 😁 8mo
quietjenn Oh, no! I hadn't heard. Really bummed. I loved this book and was already really looking forward to his new one. Now reading it will be rather bittersweet. 8mo
Ms_Johnson11 I loved this book. 8mo
ferskner I will read along! I just saw him at my local bookstore last week. I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw the headline. 8mo
Librarybelle @ferskner It was shocking! @CareBear and I will be reading the book in June...you‘re welcome to join us! 8mo
BookNAround Such a great book and such a big loss to the writing and reading world. 8mo
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ChrisBohjalian
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Utterly devastated to hear that the brilliant writer Tony Horwitz has died. I loved his work, beginning with CONFEDERATES IN THE ATTIC, and I loved those moments when our paths crossed. He was such a fine man and had such a precise and inspiring moral compass. I mourn with his readers and his remarkable wife, the wise and generous and immensely talented novelist, Geraldine Brooks.

Well-ReadNeck So sad to hear this. As it happens, I‘m currently reading his latest, 8mo
AmyG I was so saddened to read this earlier today. What a loss. And he was my age....too you g. 8mo
Dorianna Incredibly sad about this. I always enjoyed his work. 8mo
JSW Oh no. What a rich talent he was. 8mo
41 likes4 comments
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Liberty
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I am terribly sorry to hear that Tony Horwitz has died. BLUE LATITUDES was the first book we read for the RiverRun nonfiction book club, and the two books pictured were among the first books I read when I became interested in the Civil War, and remain among my favorites. His new book, SPYING ON THE SOUTH, came out two weeks ago and is also excellent.

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HotMessJess
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Day two of maternity leave: I‘ve slept for a solid 6 hours today. Food is hard. I feel like I‘m getting the flu, but getting lots of reading in tonight! I hope I get a nesting surge sometime soon because I‘m nervous I won‘t. Almost 39 weeks and feeling like a baby beluga. #pleasegetout

Slajaunie Understand completely but enjoy the rest and relaxation while you can!! 12mo
56 likes1 comment
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HotMessJess
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Last day before Maternity leave, getting to do lists done and everything in order.... yes I am one of those crazy planner people (thanks for the addiction, work husband). Time to drink some tea, relax and read! I have a book list lined up for my first week of leave and I am SO excited to share it with you! Hint: it involves finishing what I start! Here‘s to being one day closer to a glass of wine with my book! 13 days until I‘m due! 🍷👶🏼🍾🎉

Booksnchill Best wishes! 12mo
HotMessJess @Booksnchill thank you!! Very ready for this tiny human to get out! 12mo
Tamra Adventure begins! 12mo
HotMessJess @Tamra definitely my wildest adventure yet! 12mo
TrishB I like your priorities 👍🏻 good luck 12mo
53 likes5 comments
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HotMessJess
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2019 is my year of intentions: I wanted to share my 3 intentions for this year. The most important of these? Finish what I start, and that starts with the books I‘ve half read and abandoned for no good reason.

My other intentions are below...but I should‘ve added enjoy a MASSIVE glass of red wine when this kid arrives in the next few weeks 🍾🍷❤️
http://booknerdwilltravel.com/2019/01/08/lookingtowards2019/

AlaMich A friend‘s baby is due in about five weeks and she can‘t wait to have a glass of wine, either. 😆 13mo
HotMessJess @AlaMich I‘m with her! Due in two weeks and my husband has said time and time again that he wants to buy me a nice bottle to have when we get home and I‘m like NOPE! I got an $8 bottle of my fav weeknight wine that I‘ve had on my counter since the week I found out I was pregnant and it‘s the first damn bottle I‘m going for! 12mo
AlaMich @HotMessJess 🤣👍 12mo
35 likes3 comments
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HotMessJess
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Last night I dumped a glass of wine INTO my book. None on the floor or carpet.... just IN my book. How does this happen?!

cobwebmoth Oh no! That sounds like something I would do.😕 2y
AmandaL Oh no! 2y
TheWordJar 😱 I've had moments like that too! 2y
See All 16 Comments
TheBookDream I think that book needs a glass of wine 2y
Tamra 😱 2y
Avanders 😢 2y
Jess7 Oh no! 2y
keithmalek It represents the blood of Civil War soldiers. 2y
Cathythoughts I‘d like to pour a glass of wine into my present book 😡out of anger. ( it‘s a kindle , I can‘t! - ) 2y
Dragon Oh no! 2y
JazzFeathers 😨 2y
Caroline2 Nooooooooo!!! 😱 🍷 2y
Jas16 😩 2y
minkyb Oh my. Sorry. 2y
ErickaS_Flyleafunfurled Well, a rose tint is okay! Hair dryer? 2y
48 likes16 comments
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HotMessJess
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Work from home lunch vibes 🤓🤓🤓
So glad to be able to focus on big projects and myself today! Always try to read for 20 minutes at lunch when I work from home..... What do you do if you work from home for lunch?

Getting ready for this weekend too- finally getting the chance to unpack our boxes from the house reno and get my TBR shelf back together!

#workingfortheweekend #winterreads #TBRshelvesexist #TBRpile

Molly_the_mezzo When I work from home, I work right through lunch - grab some food and eat it at my computer! It makes my day end quicker so I can get back to the fun stuff! 2y
HotMessJess @Molly_the_mezzo I have to break it up! My attention doesn‘t stay long enough to get everything done :/ 2y
Molly_the_mezzo @HotMessJess I get that. I have to switch back and forth between different work activities myself. 2y
36 likes1 stack add3 comments
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mcausten_sister
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They don't tell us this in history class!

#WomenInHistory #CivilWar #History

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mcausten_sister
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Oh, but I thought you said it wasn't that bad? So why don't you want to be in that situation if it isn't so terrible?

Oh. Wait. It's because it is terrible and you know it.

There are some really funny and moving sections that I've read about people and their tie to the past, but there are also these absolutely terrible people who fit into the national narrative that is going on today.

#ConfederatesInTheAttic #CivilWar #History

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mcausten_sister
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mcausten_sister
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I busted out laughing and scared my dog. This is so deadpan, I love it.

#ConfederatesInTheAttic #History #MaybeHistory #CivilWar #AConfederateTourOfTheSouth

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mcausten_sister
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Started this today for my Public History class. Not a big fan of the author himself. He refers to his rural home in Virginia as a village and his wife picked the spot because it is what she thought the American back country looks like. He also reinforces heteronormativity and sexism by referring to the Civil War reenactors as a "gay subculture" because of their attention to authentic detail.

#HistoryIGuess #CivilWarHistory #PopCulture

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HotMessJess
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Starting Saturday with my 30 page Habitica task! This seemed fitting, considering the current climate.

Drinking a homemade matcha latte in my Slytherin cup!

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LeahBergen
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This is the book that started my fascination with the American Civil War and it's a favourite of mine to recommend to others.
#5555giveaway

Ellen Such a great book. I also really liked his 3y
Megabooks Definitely adding! Thanks! 3y
MelindaOtt I read this one several years ago and loved it! I wish he'd put out an updated version! 3y
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LeahBergen @Ellen I really liked that one, too. Another great one of his is 3y
LeahBergen @MelindaOtt That would be great! 3y
Hobbinol I just loved it! I get a lot of old confederates at the library (or at least they think they are). 3y
shawnmooney Sounds great! 3y
LauraBeth I should reread this! 3y
LeahBergen @Hobbinol 😂😂 3y
LeahBergen @LauraBeth I should, too! 3y
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Librarybelle
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A favorite of mine, this really gets to the core of passion and why it's so important to remember the past. Horwitz follows a group who authentically reenact a CSA regiment. While some still "fight the war," it's the lasting perceptions and the need to understand past actions that propel people to their beliefs. At times scary, I was so riveted. Anyone with an interest in the US Civil War should try this. It really makes you think. #35bookparty

brennahawleycraig This is one of my all-time favorites!! 3y
LeahBergen Love this book. 👍🏼 3y
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jdtchicago

Like so much in Atlanta, Stone Mountain had become a bland and inoffensive consumable: the Confederacy as hood ornament. Not for the first time, though more deeply than ever before, I felt a twinge of affinity for the neo-Confederates I'd met in my travels. Better to remember Dixie and debate its philosophy than to have its largest shrine hijacked for Coca-Cola ads and MTV songs.

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jdtchicago

The scale of Monument Avenue also amplified the weirdness of the whole enterprise. After all, Davis, Lee, Jackson and Stuart weren't national heroes. In the view of many Americans, they were precisely the opposite; leaders of a rebellion against the nation...None of those honored were native Richmonders. And their mission failed...I couldn't think of another city in the world that lined its streets with stone leviathans honoring failed rebels

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jdtchicago

Everywhere, it seemed, I had to explore two pasts and two presents; one white, one black, separate and unreconcilable. The past had poisoned the present and the present, in turn, now poisoned remembrance of things past.

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jdtchicago

You asked how I'd define prejudice. That's it. Making assumptions about people you've never met.

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jdtchicago

When Union litter-bearers climbed out of their trenches, four days after the assault, they found only two men still alive amongst the piles of stinking corpses. One burial party discovered a dead Yankee with a diary in his pocket, the last entry of which read: “June 3. Cold Harbor. I was killed."

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M-D
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Pickpick

This book deals with a lot of strong feeling about the South, Race, and equality. It was written in 1998 and I can still see the images that are portrayed in this book alive today, sad to say. Some of this book sickened my stomach through no fault of the author. By the end of it, I had to push through it, but still highly recommend this book.

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JHgotham
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Thought I would listen to this while at work. I'm trying to have an open mind but the hateful opinions and praying for the confederacy to come back..leaves a bad taste in my mouth; thinking these people truly believe in that 😣

M-D I'm having trouble with this book too 😢 3y
3 likes1 comment
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M-D
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A little light reading, Civil War/Travel book to go in between all the biographies and memoirs 😃

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irregularreader
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still a bit of space . . . .

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LeahBergen
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LyndseyReads Oooh. I love the vintage covers. 😍 3y
TheSpinecrackersBookClub Sure is! Love all the titles. 3y
CherylDeFranceschi Lovely picture! 3y
erzascarletbookgasm OMG, Andrew Lang's Pink Fairy! 💗 One of my goals is to own the complete Fairy books.. 3y
LeahBergen I know, @erzascarletbookgasm ! They are so beautiful. I only have this one and the Blue Fairy Book 3y
47 likes4 stack adds5 comments
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elkeo_TheBookDragon
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And all together now - pink AND green 💖💚💥

#augustphotochallenge #pinkandgreenbooks #augustofpages #shelvingbycolorisfun

Maike Wow, what a collection😍 3y
RealLifeReading Nice! Think that's the biggest collection of pinks and greens I've seen so far 3y
Eyelit Awesome collection! 3y
See All 7 Comments
Varshitha Such a pretty stack❤️ 3y
elkeo_TheBookDragon @Maike @RealLifeReading @Eyelit @Varshitha Thanks! It's fun pulling books together that would never meet each other otherwise 🙂 3y
TheSpinecrackersBookClub Loving how great these books look together. 3y
elkeo_TheBookDragon @TheSpinecrackersBookClub Your pink + green challenge was inspired! 3y
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