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Grade 4 Up–Cavalryman Jeb Stuart is a spotter for a small crew of men in an equally small M-3 tank during World War II. The tank's small-caliber cannon and short firing range make it an unlikely survivor against the enemy's heavier artillery, but through guile and unexpected warnings it is able to maneuver through a series of combat triumphs. The warnings come from the ghost of Jeb Stuart, a former general in the Rebel army and the namesake of the tank's spotter. The individual stories are a series of strategic mysteries: how to outwit superior firepower, how to find a ghost tank in a battlefield, how to signal to one's comrades that a spy has infiltrated their unit, and so forth. Despite the enigmatic clues provided by the guardian ghost, the odds never feel like they are unrealistically stacked, and the victories of the M-3's crew seem fairly won, and hard won, which creates a satisfying suspense. And while the prose is overcooked and the regular reintroduction of the ghost and the fact that only Jeb can see him gets tiresome, the detailed artwork is exceptionally good, with beautiful technical detail and lush, textured shadows. This reprint volume is likely to be better at providing dedicated readers with a fascinating view into a unique story conceit than at finding new readers and exposing them to a historical genre of comics gone by.–Benjamin Russell, Belmont High School, MA
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