A Fatal Mercy
The Man Who Lost the Civil War
A Fatal Mercy is set in the American War of Secession and its aftermath. Drayton FitzHenry is the son of a prominent South Carolina planter. He opposes secession but joins his brothers in the Confederate Army in defense of his state. During the war’s decisive battle at Gettysburg, Drayton commits an act of mercy toward a Union officer which he later discovers probably caused the South to lose the battle. By his act of mercy, he is literally “the man who lost the Civil War.”
Drayton wrestles with guilt and self-reproach for half a century until he travels to Gettysburg in 1913 when 50,000 Union and Confederate veterans returned to the battlefield for a time of national reconciliation.
A Fatal Mercy was Long-Listed for the 2017 British Bridport Prize for Fiction. The first chapter was a winner in the “Chapter One Contest” of the West Cork (Ireland) Literary Festival.
Paperback ISBN: 978-1947660199