Tuesday, August 9, 2011

ExcerpTuesday: Jeffrey Marks

Jeffrey Marks is author of the book Intent to Sell which is a must read for anyone who wants to be successful at marketing their book.


Under Reconstruction



Ulysses S. Grant took a swig of whiskey and smiled into his beard. Nothing got the morning off to a good start like a belt. The Commander of the Union Army didn’t have much to occupy his thoughts; the army’s usefulness had faded since Appomattox, a few parades and official appearances. Of course, the troops paraded for that damned, interfering General Sherman complete with a twenty-one gun salute today. The Union wanted to remind people what the government had sacrificed for them.

Did the masses care? People respected Grant’s contributions, but they yearned for rebuilding commerce and trade, professions he’d failed at before the war. Rumors around the Capitol marked him for President in three years. Then he’d have new battles to fight. Until then, he had to wait.

He downed the last of the flask and looked out the window, overlooking the lawn and the city of Washington beyond. Unless disaster struck, he could count on an easy nomination and a landslide victory. On his last tour, the townsfolk had loved him at every stop.

Julia had gone off to inspect the house presented to them by some wealthy Philadelphians, escaping the Washington summer. Even so, she’d made her wishes known to Ulysses before she left. Washington was to be her new home.

Ulysses pulled out his pocket watch, and cursed to no one in particular. Damn, another meeting with that pompous ass Stanton. What had Lincoln accomplished by appointing him as Secretary of War? Stanton couldn’t slug his way out of a cotillion, much less execute the Union siege at Vicksburg. Lincoln had known the courage needed to win a war and hadn’t hindered Grant—even though he’d taken shit for his choice. Stanton, with his presidential aspirations, observed from behind the safety of his desk.

Grant stood, steadying himself with one hand. Drinks on an empty stomach hadn’t been such a great idea. He’d probably be asleep a few minutes into Stanton’s long-winded ramblings.

He strode down the hall to Stanton’s office, passing a few sentries along the way. In the three months since Lincoln’s death, security had been implemented in the White House. Shoddily to Grant’s mind. Anyone could barge into the West Wing. This kind of laxity wouldn’t happen if, no—when he were in charge.


2 comments:

Angela Roe said...

I like what I read. I'm not typically too excited by historical accounts but personality shines through this. Jeffrey Marks may just have changed my views!

Cheryl said...

As a Civil War buff and a mystery fan, this book seems right up my alley.