North and South (North and South #1) By John Jakes

Book Version

TV Version

July 10, 2012
Open Road Media
Historical Fiction
Author’s Page

I chose to revisit North And South again to reconnect with the whole story because the producers of the mini-series cut a few key characters out of the story and physically altered other characters there by taking away a lot from the story. By reading the books I get visit with the real characters of the story not the so called ‘made for TV beautiful people’ that replaced them. Don’t get me wrong I love many of those actors, just not for North And South.

When I first picked up North And South I was supposed to be doing research for a psych paper at Portland Community College, needless to say I got a shit grade because I really wasn’t crazy about psych and preferred the book. Personally, I think I made the right choice 30 years ago, because reading this book was an amazing experience. I even got my Husband to read it at one point, he read all three and he isn’t a big reader.

Now I sit here wondering what I was thinking not pick up the book again sooner because the mini-series has truly distorted what I remembered. For example, where are Francis LaMotte or Cooper Main in the tv version, they are after all just as important to the story as Orry and George. Then there was the physical descriptions of a number of the characters, there was a huge discrepancy between how the tv version and the book version look, for example instead of Orry’s arm (in the book) it was his leg in the mini-series. Then there is Bent according to the book he is not skinny in the book but the tv did do a great job on his evilness. There was so much that I missed because it has been so long since I read the book and I promise to read it again more often.

Book’s Blurb
The first volume of John Jakes’s acclaimed and sweeping saga about a friendship threatened by the divisions of the Civil War

In the years leading up to the Civil War, one enduring friendship embodies the tensions of a nation. Orry Main from South Carolina and George Hazard from Pennsylvania forge a lasting bond while training at the United States Military Academy at West Point. Together they fight in the Mexican-American War, but their closeness is tested as their regional politics diverge. As the first rounds are fired at Fort Sumter, Orry and George find themselves on different sides of the coming struggle. In John Jakes’s unmatched style, North and South launches a trilogy that captures the fierce passions of a country at the precipice of disaster.

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