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Publisher's Summary

History for busy people. Listen to a concise history of the Vietnam War in just one hour.

War, what is it good for? The Vietnam War: History In an Hour gives a gripping account of the most important Cold War-era conflict, fought between the United States and the Viet Cong, the Vietnam People's Army and their Communist allies. It was one of the most traumatic military conflicts America has ever been involved in – and provoked a backlash of anti-war protests at home.

Here are the key events leading up to the Vietnam War, the deadly guerrilla warfare of the Viet Cong, the domestic anti-war movement, and the fall of Saigon. The Vietnam War: History In an Hour is essential listening for anyone interested in post-war history.

Love your history? Find out about the world with History in an Hour….

©2012 Neil Smith (P)2012 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

Critic Reviews

"If the past is a foreign country, History in an Hour is like a high-class tour operator, offering delightfully enjoyable short breaks in the rich and diverse continent of our shared past." (Dominic Sandbrook)
"The practice of History is ever-evolving, and the History In An Hour idea brings it back up to date for the digital age." (Andrew Roberts, Bookseller)
"This is genius." (MacWorld.com)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Typical left wing narrative

This brief account of the Vietnam War, while interesting and very well performed, he's a typical left wing liberal narrative. It goes into much detail about the blundering, deceitfulness, and ineptitude of American political and military leaders, and the repressive and brutal nature of the South Vietnamese government. Yet it makes hardly any mention and certainly goes into no discussion of the lying propaganda, oppression of the peasantry, mass murder of perceived state enemies, and the overall oppressive and dictatorial reality of the Communists. After listening to this, One is left with the impression that the communist North Vietnamese were nothing other than Noble nationalists fighting for the freedom of their oppressed countrymen against the criminal actions of the unthinking Americans. No mention is made of the treatment of American prisoners of war or of the South Vietnamese people after the fall of Saigon. And very little information is given about the larger context of the Cold War and the reality of communist aggression. Where this is mentioned it is presented as though it were unfounded American paranoia. This is a completely biased and one-sided account. The greatest lesson I take from it is to never listen to his street in our presentations that are related to the Cold War.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Shah Alam
  • Brampton, Ontario, Canada
  • 10-25-17

An Afterburner

I recently (Oct 2017) watched the 18 hours long documentary titled “the Vietnam War” aired by PBS and produced by Ken Burns. It’s an excellent production that gives a very comprehensive account of the entire war.

Yet some aspects of history were missing from this documentary — like the history of Vietnam’s own struggle with communism that lead to the factionalism and the creation of the Viet Cong. So while the documentary refers to the North Vietnam Army and the Viet Cong often, the viewer remains unclear about the delineation between the two.

This book covered those gaps for me. While the documentary filled me with extensive details of deployment, action on the battlefield, the political maneuvers in the US and the personal account of some families, this book served as the "Executive Summary" that capped the picture.

It’s an excellent account of the Vietnam war and powerfully narrated. It will serve those well who wish to get an objective picture within a short time.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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good but...

well narrated. I know you can't get all the info on the war in one hour or even several hours but I feel like is was missing too much. Especially why America was involved.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Michael
  • Phoenix, AZ, United States
  • 08-06-12

Garbage

Any additional comments?

Pretty much what I expected. Liberal perspective on Vietnam. Basically gives a negative spin on everything the US did. Get The Politically Incorrect Guide To Vietnam instead.

8 of 14 people found this review helpful

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Fine introduction

This is an extremely condensed version of s very complex conflict but it serves well as a framework on which to build further knowledge.

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I was there in 1967 & 1968

I was drafted into Army and saw more combat that a 21 year old should have experienced. This was some history and details I was not aware of.

  • Overall

Vietnam War

Excellent and concise, it explained in detail why and how this war happened.. it also explained the main players.
He was

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Good if you're somewhat familiar

It is a great, well performed version. However, I found that I had to go look up some of the terms and read more because some of it was a little to dense for me. Honestly, I am not too familiar with this time in history. I think if you were somewhat familiar or I needed a little deeper dive or quick refresh this would be great

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The Vietnam War.... the memories of the sixties...

I have not fought in Vietnam (and thank God for that!), but nevertheless the book reminded me of the turbulent and exciting sixties. (Remember the saying "if you remember the sixties, you weren't really there?")
I found the book to be light, well written, and very informative. I did not find it to be biased as some of the other readers suggested.
Overall, I highly recommend the 'History in an Hour' series. They are light, informative, and well presented. And you can't beat the price!

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Gareth
  • Waverly, PA, United States
  • 09-09-16

My kind of read

Just right detail for a refreshing update on history. I will read every one of this series

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Bookworm
  • 02-12-17

The briefest of descriptions

Any additional comments?

This is a political timetable of the main issues which tells you very little about the war itself.

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  • Customer
  • 09-11-16

reasonable introduction to the vietnam war

a good brief introduction, however i feel the topic is a little to complex to cover in an hour. the time line is a little confusing near the end and the is no reflection on the aftermath of this war.

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  • Michael Warren
  • 03-27-15

Bounces a bit too much around the timeline

The audiobook does a reasonably good job of providing a basic introduction to the war, although it does far too much backtracking at times. A section will go on to 1970, say, and then the next will go back to 1967 and cover different events. This makes the chronology, and the narrative of the war, harder to follow. There also seems to be a significant focus on the US and its politics, and much less on the Vietnamese and the actual ground campaign - in particular, little is discussed of the tactics employed by both sides in the jungle, and no mention at all (from what I recall) of the use of napalm and other defoliants.

Keeble is as excellent a narrator as he always is, reading with a measured pace and tone that maintains good comprehension (although the accents can sometimes be a bit distracting!), but the fragmented approach taken by the author and the omissions made means I would rate this lower than other History in an Hour audiobooks I have purchased before now.

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  • ReadingWild
  • 02-20-15

Fact packed

Although the narrative chops around a bit too much, it's due to the sheer weight and detail that the subject covers, it's one that needs several listens just to take it all in...but worth it.