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The Civil War: A Narrative, Vol. 3

Red River to Appomattox
Narrated by: Grover Gardner
Series: The Civil War: A Narrative, Book 3
Length: 58 hrs and 23 mins
5 out of 5 stars (535 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Here is the final volume of the highly acclaimed narrative history named one of the best nonfiction books of the century by National Review.

In The Civil War: A Narrative, Vol. 3, Shelby Foote follows the events of the war from 1862 through 1864, discussing the strategies of both the North and the South and assessing the performance of the Union generals. The book opens with the beginning of the two final, major confrontations of the war: Grant against Lee in Virginia and Sherman pressing Johnston in North Georgia. In vivid narrative as seen from both sides, he tells of the climactic struggles, great and small, on and off the field of battle, that finally decided the fate of this nation.

The Civil War: A Narrative, Vol. 3 brings to a close the story of four years of turmoil and strife that altered American life forever.

©1986 Shelby Foote (P)2017 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

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let the future not repeat the past

author shelby foote provides the reader with a panaranic view of this complex, tragic span of time called THE Civil War. Though the better part of the book details the Civil War battles, military strategy and their outcomes, he does spend considerable time graphically describing key figures, North and South, who conducted this conflict. I would like to believe that even the author would have acknowledged that many, many more pages about the war's medical failures and successes were worthy of elaboration, that more comments from black soldiers would have been insightful additions to this tome, that life in military prisons would have expanded upon the cruelty experienced North and South, that the lives of millions of non combatants were painfully, daily, adversely impacted as well as a miriad of other "side" issues were consecutively deserving of mention. The narration was Superbowl, lengthy but well worth the listen. Thank you .

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Epic Conclusion to the Series

Would you consider the audio edition of The Civil War: A Narrative, Vol. 3 to be better than the print version?

I started reading the print version's series years ago, but never finished it; it may have seemed too daunting. However, having finished the audio version now, I can say that this version captured me more. Yes, I missed the maps, but you can always look those up on the internet. I prefer the audio version because it helped me finish the series, and enjoy even more while doing so.

Who was your favorite character and why?

I learned to appreciate two characters more: one major, and one less so. Robert E. Lee is fascinating. His tactics, attitude, leadership traits, and skill on the battlefield brought out his character and influence on the Southern cause.

General George Thomas, the Virginian, was also presented well. I learned so much more about him than I'd previously known. I liked his steadfastness and dependability. Students should learn more about this man.

What does Grover Gardner bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

His voice matches the time period perfectly. He is not trite, simple, or boring. His voice is easy to listen to, his pronunciations are accurate, and he portrays the narrative and its author perfectly.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The events portrayed in this volume are perhaps the least known to most Americans (excluding Sherman's March and Appomattox), as they definitely were to me. The Overland Campaign was brutal, and Shelby Foote tells its story in a way that makes it very interesting. I was amazed by the shear scale of those sets of battles, and the determination it took for the Union to follow through with the campaign.

Any additional comments?

I don't hesitate to say that this series is the best volume of history I've ever read. I didn't consider myself a student of the Civil War before reading; now that I'm finished, I look forward to reading more about this tragic period of American history.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Most unbiased and straightforward history of the Civil War I have read to date

Thank you to Shelby Foot and to all those who helped gather the information for this book. I have come to many of the same conclusions in my mind about the Civil War prior to this book. This just reaffirms my thoughts and impressions. I am grateful but it was put together in such a way that made the understanding of the battles in the Civil War more understandable.

The narration by Grover Gardner was fantastic thank you for doing such a great job.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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Best of the 3 Volumes

What’s the Audible equivalent of a page-turner? Non-pauser? I did not want to stop listening to it. Whereas the first 2 volumes had their lulls. I imagine the actual war had the same pattern for those that lived it.

The last chapter maybe the best. I did expect there would be much to add, since the title states Appomattox as the final stop. But the reflection on the cost of the war (in terms of lives lost) and other points really brought the story forward.

People tend to talk of the Civil War in terms of heroes and villains. After this book, I have a greater appreciation of the collective costs to the entire country, the trauma of the event (some effects are still with us), and also the opportunities that came from it (our military might has its true beginnings here).

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Wow that was a lot about the Civil War!

After listening to all three of Shelby Foote's Civil War books over the last 2 months I feel fatigued. He packs a whole lot of information in each book and it is a commitment of nearly 160 hours to get through them all.

I already knew a considerable amount about the Civil War before I started the marathon listen but there were a lot of details that I was not aware of. Having made it through the entire trilogy I have a few observations;

1. Foote does a great job of providing information on nearly every significant event and battle of the Civil War.
2. Even with a good knowledge of the subject I still learned a lot of new information.
3. Listening piqued my interest in a few different way and I want to learn more, specifically about the battles that my great and 2nd great grandfather took part in as Union soldiers from Wisconsin.
4. I don't really know anything, except the term Carpet Bagger, from the Reconstruction and I am interested to learn about it now.
5. I learned a lot about the individuals involved, Lee, Grant, Meade, Pickett, Davis and others aren't just names anymore. I feel like I know them, at least a little bit.

Finally, there is a reason that Shelby Foote's Civil War: A Narrative is considered a classic, it is captivating and informative on a level beyond any other history books I have read.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Excellent

Well done both written and narration good use of personal letters by prominent persons and privates in the armies

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Civil War From Southern Perspective

The very detailed narrative is weighted toward southern victories. Example: every victorious action by Bedford Forrest related in detail. His final action, in which he was routed, gets only passing mention. I may reread Bruce Carlton as an antidote.

5 of 7 people found this review helpful

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very complete but written with confederate sympath

very complete but written with confederate sympathy....excellent narration...understandable that the confederate sympathy comes from the origin of the writer.

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Evans Review

Shelby Foote I my option was the best Civil War Historian and writer. These books are must read of you study the War in depth. I have listen to these books twice the most in depth writing of the War. Plus if of visit these civil war sites you have an understanding have the battles took shape.

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The Civil War Epic

This book is the most thorough historical novel I have ever read. It has opened my eyes to the struggle of the men that went through this and a much greater understanding of the leaders at the time.