An American Sniper in the Civil War Takes Center Stage in Historical Novel

Home Again, author Michael Kenneth Smith
Home Again, author Michael Kenneth Smith

USA –-(  Snipers are not a modern-day military tactic. In the American Civil War, both the Yankees and the Confederates had skilled snipers with advanced rifles and scopes that allowed them to hit targets over a thousand yards away.

In Home Again, author Michael Kenneth Smith presents a true-to-life work of historical fiction that describes through a young soldier the important role of snipers—called sharpshooters back then. Zach fights for the Union and earns notoriety for his accuracy with a rifle custom-made by his father, a gunsmith. Beginning with his first kill, Zach feels remorse and guilt over ending a human life. He questions if it’s fair, honorable or moral to shoot an enemy without warning from a safe distance. Are his victims really enemies, or soldiers like him eager to return to their families?

Luke is a Confederate, who enters the conflict in hopes of doing something to make his father proud. He volunteers to help two overworked surgeons in a field hospital by stitching up the gashes of wounded soldiers. Seeing an opportunity to stand out, Luke impulsively mounts a horse and rushes into enemy lines to retrieve the fallen Confederate flag. His fellow troops cheer, but the surgeons shame him for risking his life for the sake of glory when he is needed to help save injured soldiers.

Set in Tennessee, Home Again does not take sides. Zach and Luke are both from Tennessee and there is little mention of the issues or the cause of the war. The surgeons tend to all soldiers regardless of the side they fight for.

The dramatic and poignant stories of the two boys, uniquely told in alternating chapters, represent the aspirations of many young boys who seek action, adventure and glory and quickly confront the horrific realities of war.

Smith vividly describes the chaos and elements they endure, as well as the sight of soldiers with limbs blown off and guts spilling into the mud, the screams and desperate pleas for help, the smell of gunpowder and decaying bodies.

Based on his meticulous research, Smith skillfully weaves his fictional characters into actual events and battles, notably Shiloh and Gettysburg. The personalities and leadership styles of well- known generals on both sides of the conflict are well presented, and brief biographies of many of them are in the epilogue.

Home Again
Michael Kenneth Smith
List $13.95 paperback
Paperback 251 Pages, 4 battlefield maps
Audio $17.46 e-book $5.99
Published by Create Space
ISBN 978-1-4991-5709-3

Named by Indie Reader as one of the best books published in 2014

About the Author

Michael K. Smith trained as a mechanical engineer and began a successful auto parts business in the early 1980's. He sold his business in 2000 and retired. Since then, he fished, golfed, cooked, played bridge, became an oenophile, socialized, and even edited a local newspaper. Throughout his journey, telling stories always came easy to him. In 2013, he decided to share his stories with the world.

For more information visit

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    At the beginning of the “War of Southern Succession”, the South had better leadership in the field as a number of officers left the Union ranks to fight with their home states. Because the South was more agrarian, the soldier had to provide for their families by hunting in the field as opposed to buying food at the store. The North made up the difference in manpower and industry eventually overcoming the South by sheer manpower and equipment. Fast forward to WWII, the US was the “Arsenal of Democracy”. Today, I’m not certain we could do that!


    The South had far superior snipers than the yankees had ! Southern boys just grew up knowing how to shoot. Yankees with few exception were pitiful shots during the War Between the States ! Southern snipers went after high value targets and the yankees more than not shot each other. (whats knowed today as friendly fire)