Prompted by a desperate letter from an estranged cousin in Virginia, Robert must put aside his plans to join the Yankee army and help his family. A visit to his uncle throws him by mistake into the middle of a prison escape. After he’s left for dead, an unexpected friend lends him a hand, further blurring the lines of Robert’s patriotic loyalty. As he and his new friend set out to find his family, Robert finds the journey to be harder than he ever imagined, and that the enemy he must confront has a different face than he first believed. If he is going to rescue his family, Robert knows it will take wrestling with more than just the enemies of war. And the results may not be of his own making.
I Have Seen Him in the Watchfires is the sequel to Gohlke’s Christy Award-winning William Henry is a Fine Name. The Civil War story tackles issues of loyalty, humanity, and faith through the eyes of an 18 year-old boy with family on both sides of the battle lines.
The writing is absolutely amazing– the kind of stuff that will stick with you long after you put the book down. If you enjoy historical fiction, particularly the Civil War era, you absolutely have to give this a read. I haven’t read William Henry, but I had no trouble following the plot and characters of I Have Seen Him in the Watchfires. I don’t think you have to read them in order, but if the first one is as good as this (and I’ve heard it is) then by all means, read both as I plan to do myself!
There are some oblique references to a rape that occurred before the story takes place.
Robert wrestles with his faith and the idea that God is in control, has a plan, and will take care of him.
Robert is bound during the prison escape. One character shoots another and threatens other lives before falling to death.