Rhett Butler's People
Rhett Butler's People by Donald McCaig
Donald McCaig
Donald McCaig is an American novelist, poet and essayist. He lives on a sheep farm in Western Virginia.His 1998 novel set in Civil War Virginia won the Michael Shaara Award for Excellence in Civil War Fiction...

 is an authorized sequel to Gone with the Wind
Gone with the Wind
The slaves depicted in Gone with the Wind are primarily loyal house servants, such as Mammy, Pork and Uncle Peter, and these slaves stay on with their masters even after the Emancipation Proclamation of 1863 sets them free...

. It was published in November 2007.

Fully authorized by the Margaret Mitchell
Margaret Mitchell
Margaret Munnerlyn Mitchell was an American author and journalist. Mitchell won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1937 for her epic American Civil War era novel, Gone with the Wind, which was the only novel by Mitchell published during her lifetime.-Family:Margaret Mitchell was born in Atlanta,...

 estate, Rhett Butler’s People is a novel that parallels Gone with the Wind from Rhett Butler's perspective. The book was unveiled on November 3, 2007 after several years of setbacks and two previous authors. Both Ema Tennant and Pat Conroy
Pat Conroy
Pat Conroy , is a New York Times bestselling author who has written several acclaimed novels and memoirs. Two of his novels, The Prince of Tides and The Great Santini, were made into Oscar-nominated films.-Early life:...

 had been previously commissioned by the estate to produce the book.

McCaig chooses to disregard the novel
A novel is a book of long narrative in literary prose. The genre has historical roots both in the fields of the medieval and early modern romance and in the tradition of the novella. The latter supplied the present generic term in the late 18th century....

Scarlett (novel)
Scarlett is a novel written in 1991 by Alexandra Ripley as a sequel to Margaret Mitchell's Gone with the Wind. The book debuted on the New York Times bestsellers list, but both critics and fans of the original novel found Ripley's version to be inconsistent with the literary quality of Gone with...

by Alexandra Ripley
Alexandra Ripley
Alexandra Ripley, née Braid was an American writer best known as the author of Scarlett , the sequel to Gone with the Wind. Her first novel was Who's the Lady in the President's Bed?...

. He does not acknowledge its existence in the canon
Canon (fiction)
In the context of a work of fiction, the term canon denotes the material accepted as "official" in a fictional universe's fan base. It is often contrasted with, or used as the basis for, works of fan fiction, which are not considered canonical...

 of Gone with the Wind nor does his novel incorporate any of its characters. McCaig's impression is that the Margaret Mitchell estate was "thoroughly embarrassed" by Ripley's novel. The book attempts to present a semi-journalistic view of the life and times of Rhett Butler, while remaining faithful to the original Mitchell work. The Rhett-Scarlett love-story is downplayed in the book.

The novel begins with a duel which is mentioned in Gone with the Wind. This is the reason that Rhett is not received in Charleston. Eventually the novel flashes back to when Rhett is twelve. It continues through the time until Gone with the Wind and retells the story. The story is not completely from Rhett's perspective. It proceeds to tell other moments from the time during the original story and then proceeds to add a new ending to the story. The book only goes a short ways past the timeline of Gone with the Wind (unlike the sequel Scarlett, which travels several years further).


The Daily Telegraph
The Daily Telegraph
The Daily Telegraph is a daily morning broadsheet newspaper distributed throughout the United Kingdom and internationally. The newspaper was founded by Arthur B...

described McCaig's Butler as "touchy-feely". In The New York Times
The New York Times
The New York Times is an American daily newspaper founded and continuously published in New York City since 1851. The New York Times has won 106 Pulitzer Prizes, the most of any news organization...

, Stephen Carter noted that the character of Rhett Butler was made into a more human, flawed person than either Mitchell or Ripley portrayed him to be.

External links

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