In this dramatic, well-told story, author Clifford Dowdey recounts the pivotal Seven Days Battles of the Civil War, in which Confederate General Robert E. Lee’s army drove George B. McClellan’s invading Union soldiers out of Richmond, Virginia. Nicholas Tecosky's vibrant tones bring the story of these important 1862 battles to life, while Dowdy's skilled, detailed writing creates finely honed psychological portraits of all the men involved, including many lesser-known characters. Highly recommended for Civil War buffs, especially those interested in history recounted from the Southern point of view.
The Seven Days Campaign was a series of battles fought near Richmond at the end of June 1862. General Robert E. Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia had routed General George B. McClellan’s Army of the Potomac. Depriving McClellan of a military decision meant the war would continue for two more years.
The Seven Days depicts a critical turning point in the Civil War that would ingrain Robert E. Lee in history as one of the finest generals of all time. Masterfully written, The Seven Days is Dowdey at his finest—detailed and riveting.
©1964, 2012 Clifford Dowdey. Copyright renewed 1992 by Carolyn Dunaway (P)2012 Audible, Inc.
The information in the book was good. Nothing new really, but good. However, the narrator continues to mispronounce the names of multiple places and people. It's distracting when you want to correct him! I cannot recommend this as an audio book; maybe the print version would have been better.
The enjoyable history is made irritating by the narrator's pronunciation. While a number of the rivers around Richmond do have Indian names - every single one is mispronounced. This may be understandable, but to pronounce an army "corps" as "corpse", Jubal Early as "Jew-ball" and to read "coup de grace" as "cup dee grass" is simply ignorant.
Clifford Dowdey gives the traditional "Lost Cause" interpretation of the Civil War which dominated history books for a century after the War. Everything Lee and Jackson do is correct and moral, everything Johnston and Longstreet do is wrong and evil. But,once you accept where he is coming from, there is quite a bit of useful information here. It's also a refreshing look at McClellan, as the victim Little Mac saw himself.
I found myself cringing at his pronunciation! Is English a second language for him?
Witin the above limitations.
No - I think I said it all.
Audible has to stop hiring these amateurs to read books, this would have done better to have gone unpublished in the audio world than be furthered ruined by an amateur reader.
The reader gives a straight monotone reading, somewhat rushes through the content and mostly just sounds like someone that is told to read a statement in court. He technically gets the words right, but there is no flow, no interest, no anything good other than to make a mediocre book an awful audiobook.
This isn't the first time I've been burned by horrible readers provided by Audible, this is probably the 5th time already. I will no longer buy any audiobooks where Audible is audio publisher, they just don't care about putting out a quality product.
For the book itself it's alright but would do better in print regardless of how awful the reader was. Because there are a lot of movements, locations and tactics discussed it's not always easy to keep your mind around everything without any visual aid.
I'll give the book 3 stars, but the awful amateur reader 0 stars.
Once the reader gets passed Mr Dowdey's opinions the book is reasonably well written. The problem, and it's a BIG problem, is the narration. The reader is completely unaware of how the military works, mispronounces word after word and absolutely butchers the pronunciation of the names of many of the generals involved in the story. For example, Phillip Kearny's surname is pronounced Carney like the chili, General Huger was of French descent and pronounced his name "uzay". The list goes on and on it was so galling that I could barely listen to it. Sadly the narrator has a good voice and had he done the simplest of research could have had an excellent performance - I cannot recommend this book to any audible reader.
the print version would be better because it would have maps. Got confused trying to keep the many roads straight
the stupidity of some of the generals, especially McClellan, Joe Johnston
He had a clear voice, but as a southerner I thought he read a little too fast. He pronounced the word "adjutant" very different from I have ever heard
How a lot of soldiers died for stupid generals, but so it is in all wars
A very good analysis of battle action. The performance is less than inspiring. Names, military terms, and multi syllabic words are regularly mangled, disrupting the story's flow. Many of the author's conclusions are questionable, forced as a result of his southern leanings.
In the last ten years I have read more than several books about the Civil War. I had never heard of this author and thought maybe that was because he wasn't very good. Well I don't know why I haven't heard from him but it is not because of his lack of skill. He writes from the Southern point of view and sticks to the military history. Given those restrictions this was a very entertaining and informative book. He had a common sense point of view with a style that is more journalistic than literary.
His descriptions of the battles and the participants were very detailed and not dry at all. He was able to describe large group action in battles so well that I was able to create a picture in my mind and follow the action. He had many little details I had never heard before. James Longstreet one of the best large unit generals the South had been a paymaster in the old army.
The author makes a good argument for his premise that the Seven Days campaign made the Civil War last a year and a half longer. Lee drove McClellan away from Richmond when the Federal soldiers could hear the church bells of Richmond.
I especially enjoyed the author's biographical sketches of the leading participants. Many that are left out in other books, such as Benjamin Huger, get a thorough description from this author. I enjoyed the narration except for a couple of pronunciation mistakes. I know I will read and enjoy this book again. I recommend this book especially for Civil War buffs and I think that those looking for a well told story will enjoy it as well.
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