The time is the summer of 1864, the third year of the savage Civil
Warthat has already killed a half million Americans. The place is
Indianaand Kentucky, divided by the beautiful Ohio River but joined
by agrowing fury at the Federal government's ruthless censorship
andintolerance of dissent.
Darkhaired, willful Janet Todd is a courier and fervent
Evangelist forthe Sons of Liberty, a conspiracy to revolutionize
Kentucky, Indiana, Illinois and the other states of the American
heartland to form aNorthwest Confederacy -- and stop the war. Major
Paul Stapleton, badlywounded at Antietam and Gettysburg, commands a
troop of black cavalrymenwho hunt Union deserters. Secretly
disgusted with the war, Paul is tornbetween his love for Janet Todd
and his West Point oath of loyalty tothe Union.
Close by is Henry Gentry, boyhood friend of Major Stapleton.
Having losthis arm and most of his self respect at the Battle of
Shiloh, he is aclandestine intelligence officer, urging his old
friend to betray JanetTodd and the Sons of Liberty. "When This
Cruel War Is Over"portrays two generations of Americans struggling
to make sense of anational catastrophe, to rescue love and personal
happiness in the faceof a future that is shot through with darkness
The story surges to a
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