Union Army Black

Friday, November 1, 2013
On the small outcrop of rock no more than six feet below the edge of the ravine Zack’s body lay tangled in a mass of broken branches and leaves. His right leg was twisted under him and pressed hard against a thick branch. Blood seeped from a deep cut where the wood pressed against it. In the dark his eyelids fluttered, opened, then closed again.

Book: Union Army Black (Ben and Zack, Bk 4) by L. Travis, Baker House Publishing, 1995

Genre: Historical Fiction
Target Audience: Boys 10-14
Subjects: Civil War, Friendship, Slavery
Summary: Life as a solider isn’t easy, but Zack is managing it ok. Working as Chaplain Turner’s assistant is quite the privilege – helping teach the men how to read, caring for his great horse. When the Chaplain becomes ill and Zack is put under someone else, things are still okay – until he finds himself in the middle of an actual battle and awakes with no memory of who he is or where he belongs.
Notes: Fourth and final in the Ben and Zack series, this book focuses almost exclusively on Zack until the last chapter of the book. This book more so than any of the others truly focuses on the war itself as Zack is right in the midst of it. He is with the First United States Colored Infantry so the issue of slavery and persecution of those with black skin shows more clearly than in some of the books. The spiritual elements are different in this one – Ben isn’t there and so there isn’t much focus on spiritual elements at all. Other characters make Christian or Biblical references, but that’s it.
Spiritual Content Recommendation Scale: 2/5
Reviewer: J:-)mi

Jonah 2:6 – To the roots of the mountains I sank down; the earth beneath barred me in forever. But you brought my life up from the pit, O LORD my God.


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