The discussion last week on Hoofbeats and Cold Steel about personal libraries caused me to review my shelves a little more closely, and I found them a bit wanting in a few areas. Not wanting as in I can think of a few dozen more that I’d like to own (a permanent condition), but wanting in that there are several large gaps in the war that I have very little reference material on.

The biggest of these is the area of specific battles. I own very few works focused on specific battles or campaigns. I was fortunate enough to find a copy of John Hennessy’s Return to Bull Run in a local store this weekend, which started me thinking about the area of specific battles and campaigns. I actually own very few of these. Reference works, unit histories, tomes on the cavalry and the war in general, yes, but very few on specific battles.

Given the quantity of what’s available out there, I thought I’d ask for some input on quality. What are the best single volume battle studies out there right now? I’m specifically thinking about the Peninsula campaign and the Wilderness at the moment, but am certainly open to other suggestions. A quick search of Drew Wagenhoffer’s site didn’t turn up anything specific, although I’m now very interested in Michael Hardy’s Battle of Hanover Court House after reading the review posted there.