THE COPPER ROAD: BEYOND THE PROMISE BY RICHARD BUXTON
Publication Date: July 26, 2020 Ocoee Publishing
Series: Shire’s Union #2 Genre: Historical Fiction
Shire is far from home, his old life in Victorian England a fading memory. He’s battled through war-torn America to keep a cherished promise to his childhood companion. Now she’s pushing him away, while the war won’t let him go. Fighting for the Union, Shire must survive the brutal campaign for Atlanta and try to imagine a future without her.
Clara is free from her husband but not from his ghost. After a violent end to an abusive marriage, she struggles to keep her home in the Tennessee hills as the war steals away its treasures and its people.
Tod, a captured Rebel, escapes in Pennsylvania. His encounters on the long road back to his regiment cast the Civil War in a different light. He begins to question his will to fight.
Three young lives become wrapped in the Rebels’ desperate need for copper. Friendships, loyalty and love will be tested beyond breaking point. Shire has new promises to keep.
The Copper Road is the second novel from award winning writer Richard Buxton. Book one of Shire’s Union, Whirligig, was shortlisted for the Rubery International Book Award
My Thoughts Shire and Tod's are examples of what happens when ideals and reality meet. And one is forced to amend, uphold, or more often than not, relinquish said ideals in the face of life's truths. Such is the case of these two men. Each with his own reasons, justifications, and demons brought about and nurtured by the evils of the Civil War. For Shire... The ideal of himself as the "white knight" here to save his best friend Claire. And to fight on the "presumed side of right" As set forth by those supporters of the "Union Blue". Is called into question when he finds himself injured and living on Claire's shambling plantation. Coming to terms with the fact that everything that he fought for. Couldn't save himself or Claire from the ravages of the human condition. As for Tod... Where to start there. All of the hardships that he both caused and endured as an agent of the Confederacy. Even though he found himself face to face with reason after reason to abandon his cause.
Both men acting as mirrors of each other in the universal need to make sense of the senseless. By forging an uneasy alliance with the realization that in war everyone is a commodity. Everyone has a price. But leaving each questioning whether the price the war offered for the use of their minds and bodies; would ever justify the cost living with their actions and inaction charged to their souls.
Claire acts as the touchstone for both men. The place where both their hearts come to rest. Although one heart's rest is more peaceful than the other. She provides the humanizing and romantic elements which works to balance the emotional composition of This tale.
This complex read causes one to reevaluating our concept of hero/villain, love/hate, and valor/huberous. Realizing that all are necessary sides of the survival coin. And can be interchanged at any time.
About the Author
Richard lives with his family in the South Downs, Sussex, England. He completed an MA in Creative Writing at Chichester University in 2014. He has an abiding relationship with America, having studied at Syracuse University, New York State, in the late eighties. His short stories have won the Exeter Story Prize, the Bedford International Writing Competition and the Nivalis Short Story Award.
Richard’s first novel, Whirligig, was published in 2017 and shortlisted for the Rubery International Book Award. To learn more about Richard’s writing visit https://www.richardbuxton.net. You can also follow Richard on Facebook and Twitter.