Author Skip Tucker missed meeting General Stonewall Jackson by 150 years, but while traveling to promote his novel Pale Blue Light, Tucker might’ve encountered the next best thing. While talking about his book at the annual re-enactment of the Battle of Chanellorsville in Virginia, Tucker took the time to pose with a Jackson impersonator, as well as a host of men and women in period dress there to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the battle.
That event, at the Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park, was just one leg of Tucker’s 1,500-mile journey that included stops in the Shenandoah Valley, Atlanta, and New Orleans. At each stop Tucker has been sharing with readers his unique Civil War spy thriller Pale Blue Light, in which Tucker suggests Stonewall Jackson’s death by friendly fire might not have been as clear-cut as it seemed.
Pale Blue Light is “not simply straightforward literary fiction,” La Rosa told Shelf Awareness. “There’s a lot of history [represented in the book], and it’s full of Civil War details, but the jumping off point is a big ‘what-if’ question. Tucker weaves a very believable, even sexy story about the possibility that Jackson maybe did not die by friendly fire.”
Tucker really tried to get in the spirit of his rugged adventure, “rough-camping” along his journey from his home in Alabama to Virginia and back, along with “Jack and Jim” — his dog jack and a bottle of Jim Beam. Tucker told Publishers Weekly that “one of the reasons for my lengthy mountain trip is to visit the areas in which Stonewall Jackson trod and fought, looking for tidbits” for his planned follow-up to Pale Blue Light. “There will certainly be flashbacks in the sequel.”