John Jakes charges onward in his chronicles of Kent family, jumping ahead a few years for the fifth book (Amanda's son Louis is now a grown, married man) but slowing the pace down and really digging in. It's no wonder -- the setting for this one is the Civil War, and Jakes keeps it mainly at the beginning of the war, 1861.
Whereas the fourth book was fully Amanda Kent's story, "The Titans" trades off with her cousin Jephtha -- seen only in letters and brief encounters until now -- and his ex-wife Fan, her new husband Edward, and Jephtha's oldest son Gideon Kent, now a soldier following, certainly, the family legacy. On the ugly battlefield, Gideon comes of age and learns his true merit in much the same way Philip Kent did a hundred years earlier. Woven through the story of Gideon and the young lady he loves, Margaret Marble, is an argument on the brutality, honor, but seeming futility of war. Unlike Anne Ware, who had only admired Philip after he uniformed up, Margaret can't stand the thought of Gideon taking to the battlefield, seeing it as the most foolish form of self-destruction.
Even more important than this issue of war, though, is the idea of truth being revealed, of deceptions being uncovered, as Jephtha struggles to reconnect with the sons he's been separated from. The redemption of this "fallen" clergyman (now serving as a journalist, of all things) is cathartic for several people.
I'm loving this series, and I'm charging onward, myself, to the sixth book ...