Try our newest plan – access a growing selection of included Audible Originals, audiobooks, and podcasts.
You will get an email reminder before your trial ends.
Your Plus plan is $7.95 a month after 30 day trial. Upgrade or cancel anytime.
Buy for $34.95

Buy for $34.95

Pay using card ending in
By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Publisher's Summary

Why did 13 colonies believe they could defeat the most powerful nation on the planet? And how did they eventually manage such an impressive feat? Get the real story on the battle for American independence with Professor Guelzo's 24 gripping lectures.

With a focus on the war's strategy, military tactics, logistics, and most fascinating people, these lectures are a must own for anyone curious about the origins of the greatest nation in modern history. Told from the perspective of both sides in an intense, almost novelistic style that recreates the experience of the war's key battles and decisions, the lectures introduce you to an array of vivid personalities, including George Washington, Lord George Sackville-Germaine, Henry Knox, Sir William Howe, and Thomas Paine.

Professor Guelzo's approach gives the forces at work in the palace and in Parliament equal weight with those in play at the Continental Congress and among George Washington's inner circle. It's a perspective that reveals the very different ways in which the two nations saw both their economic relationship and the philosophical underpinnings of a government's relationship to its citizens. You'll learn what it was like to serve on either side of the conflict, how those sides were trained, and about the terrors of the battlefield.Rich in dramatic moments like this, these lectures offer a fresh appraisal of this seminal event in American history, offering the diverging views of two sides whose common heritage had yielded two very different outlooks.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.

©2008 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2008 The Great Courses

What listeners say about The American Revolution

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    958
  • 4 Stars
    181
  • 3 Stars
    46
  • 2 Stars
    13
  • 1 Stars
    4
Performance
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    873
  • 4 Stars
    137
  • 3 Stars
    45
  • 2 Stars
    10
  • 1 Stars
    7
Story
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    859
  • 4 Stars
    150
  • 3 Stars
    39
  • 2 Stars
    7
  • 1 Stars
    6

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Well worth it, quirky prof

This is an excellent course for someone that is looking for a good understanding of the key events and people from all sides of the American Revolution. I left with a good understanding of how close things were to turning out differently and the reasons why the Americans were able to triumph (or perhaps why the British failed to capitalize on their opportunities). Although not a detractor, the professor sometimes was overly fixated on the superfluous detail of reciting every regiment number participating in a particular battle. This was less informative and seemed more like a professor showing off. He also pronounces common words in a conspicuously strange manner that can be distracting (for example "ruh-cess instead of "recess")

23 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Correct Title: The American Revolutionary WAR

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?
[Edit: YES] This series is not about the American Revolution as a whole. If you're looking for a discussion of the politics, the personalities, the legal theories, and the life of the common citizen living through the Revolutionary War, then look elsewhere. These lectures focus on the WAR itself. Battles, military tactics, maneuvers, etc. If that's what you're looking for then holy crap! this is the book for you. If you were inspired by the HBO serious John Adams and came looking for info on the founders and the politics, then this isn't the series for you.

Edit: HOWEVER...after having listened to this series again (several times) I would definitely recommend it to anyone who wants to learn about the American Revolution. Maybe it isn't the potpourri cultural and legal series of lectures I was looking for, but dammit...it's so damn good in what it does.

The speaker is excellent. He gives the information as much excitement as he possibly can and his voice is pleasant and scholarly...but its a losing battle.

I have learned a LOT about the British (for which I am immensely grateful) of that period, but I'm not experiencing the joy of exploration or legal/political discourse (I'm an attorney) that I was hoping to get. This book is improperly titled (this is still a true statement).

Do you think The American Revolution needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?
Prof. Guelzo is excellent. If I were in college I would seek him out.

Edit: I have gone back through and listened to this series several times now. Everything I said about is true, but...there is just something magnetic about the way that Prof. Guelzo describes historical events. If you're interested in the revolutionary war and the time period, then this is a dense, but necessary addition to your education.

21 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

A good military history of the American Revolution

This book focused on the military, rather than philosophical or political, nature of the revolution. It still touched on some of those aspects, and examined a little bit of the personalities involved.

8 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Time honored kudos

I can’t tell you why I find early American history so fascinating. Maybe it was growing up in the Boston area, so rich in history. The sites and sounds - visiting all the monuments with the imagination of a child.

Mr. Guelzo’s treatment of these lectures is fascinating and fun. In my more than 60 years I find the American Spirit on which our country was founded to be sometimes lacking and yet in other respects- alive and well.

We came up short in many respects and still do although progress continues to be made. Slavery and the treatment of minorities have come a long way but there’s more to do. Justifying the actions we take as “for the greater good” continues to confound us as we chose the lesser of evils to guide us yet its the individual determination of the few that keeps us moving forward.

There is so much to learn from our national history and although we are tempted and do make judgements about the characters choices made - context matters. We weren’t there. We don’t necessarily understand the culture of the times. In hindsight, mistakes were made as well as great decisions to form the basis of what we now enjoy.

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Another Great Courses Program

Would you listen to The American Revolution again? Why?

It does a great job listing and recalling characters as it goes. It goes back and forth between battles, strategy and diplomacy. At the end I had a great picture of the entire conflict.

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Merica

The lecturer is dramatic so it makes it more interesting. Very good brief overview of the revolution. Apparently congress was a bunch of dicks back then too. Green is amazing.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

very educational!

If you enjoy the nuts and bolts of the American Revolution like I do, this book is for you. The narrator is animated enough to keep the lecture from droning on, and the information is interesting enough and can stand on its own. Well done folks, well done.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

entertaining and enjoyable

I've never listened to one of these lectures before. The Professor is so interesting that I found the details fascinating. Yes I did get lost occasionally with the huge cast of characters but the narrator would explain where we met that person before. Great job. I wish my college professors were that interesting 30 years ago.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Lots of less common information

I think I enjoyed this mostly because it focused on a lot of the aspects that seem to get glossed over in many accounts of the Revolution. Too many focus on the politicians and the philosophies and ignore the people who actually fought it. It also does a good job of covering the British (and French) side of the fighting and not just the American side.

The chapters are well broken down to keep topics grouped together as well.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

What every American should listen to.

This series of lectures is an excellent over view of the American Revolution and its various counter parts. Professor Allen is a fantastic orator and brings and exhilarating interest and life to his lectures. I have thoroughly enjoined every minute of these lectures and would recommend both this book and audible to anyone.

2 people found this helpful

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for bush
  • bush
  • 03-16-16

Best one yet

This series of lectures is the best I've heard so far on my Great Courses journey. Excellently presented, clearly set out and has superb narrative. Loved it.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for GC
  • GC
  • 06-02-22

Superb Audiobook

Excellent introduction to a pivotal event in world history. Very well narrated by the author.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Mr. O. Walter
  • Mr. O. Walter
  • 05-13-22

Ridiculously partisan hagiography

Less a history of the Independence War, rather a fawning tribute to the brave, self-sacrificial Americans fighting against the pantomime villains and incompetent fops from "England." Apparently, this "historian" doesn't know the difference between England and Britain, or that the Scottish regiments he refers to are not English.
Admittedly, Guelzo is a great narrator, but the endless grovelling, the noble, pompous patriot quotes, and tales of militiamen rescuing the flag in the heat of battle made me roll my eyes, as did his insistence on referring to General Burgoyne by a silly, mocking nickname over and over again. It makes me wonder whether he used Mel Gibson's The Patriot as source material. Hardly academic.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Liam
  • Liam
  • 05-27-20

Not what I was expecting

I agree with those who suggested that this ought to have been entitled the American War of Independance. As I have read several good books on the war itself I was hoping for something more about the the background and the politics, the various views and agruments of the people involved in the revolution. The lecturer was undoubtedly very good. It just wasnot what I was looking for. However taking the audiobook for what it is, I must ask what is the problem with providing maps of the various battles? Are the very expennsive to produce? Surely something can be done? So...If you are interested in the war of independence then this may be the very book for you. If you you want more than that then perhaps you should look elsewhere.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for C M Pihl
  • C M Pihl
  • 10-03-19

Amazing insight and dedication

Lively and dedicated view of the war and surrounding political environment. Highly recommended by my humble opinion.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Tim Hall
  • Tim Hall
  • 06-10-17

Good

If you could sum up The American Revolution in three words, what would they be?

Easy listening

What did you like best about this story?

Good history, not excessively military - doesn't get bogged down with order of battle listings. Fair and balanced. I listened as a Brit, and never felt that that the presentation was overly biased.

What about Professor Allen C. Guelzo’s performance did you like?

Upbeat presentation makes listening easy. Clearly spoken, with a sense of humour and a light touch.

If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

I wouldn't

Any additional comments?

Recommend

.