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Publisher's Summary

Prior to his service in the Civil War, Ulysses S. Grant exhibited few characteristics indicating that he would be an extraordinary leader. His performance as a cadet was mediocre, and he finished in the bottom half of his class at West Point. However, during his early service in the Civil War, most notably at the battles of Shiloh and Vicksburg, Grant proved that he possessed an uncommon drive. When it was most crucial, Grant demonstrated his integrity, determination, and tactical skill by taking control of the Union troops and leading his forces to victory.

A General Who Will Fight is a detailed study of leadership that explores Grant's rise from undisciplined cadet to commanding general of the United States Army. Some experts have attributed Grant's success to superior manpower and technology, to the help he received from other Union armies, or even to a ruthless willingness to sacrifice his own men. Harry S. Laver, however, refutes these arguments and reveals that the only viable explanation for Grant's success lies in his leadership skill, professional competence, and unshakable resolve. Much more than a book on military strategy, this innovative volume examines the decision-making process that enabled Grant both to excel as an unquestioned commander and to win.

The book is published by The University Press of Kentucky. The audiobook will be published by University Press Audiobooks.

"This is an extraordinary book covering the leadership style of General U.S. Grant during the American Civil War." (Lone Star Book Review)

"Incisive and inspirational tour of how Grant became Grant." (American History Magazine)

"This book is a readable, moving, and inspiring story of one of America's greatest generals." (Civil War Book Review)

©2013 The University Press of Kentucky (P)2018 Redwood Audiobooks

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

A quick focus on a interesting man

In short order like a good General this Book gives its premise as to why this General and President grew as a human being and how he became much more then he appeared to be,

The Narrator does a great job in making you relax and absorb the material.


This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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Clear, concise and enlightening

I listened to The Leadership of Ulysses S. Grant by Harry S. Laver on audiobook, narrated by J. Scott Bennett. It's not a long book, only 6 hrs and 48 minutes, which is short compared to some of the other lengthy books on Grant, but, much like Grant's war stategy, it marches straight forward and without deviation, goal firmly in mind. This gives it a wonderful clarity, and kept me completely interested every minute.

The author focuses on something that had puzzled me. How did Grant, small of stature, mild of manner and admittedly flawed in some aspects of his character, how did he manage to rally Union troops and lead them to victory. What did he do, how did he act, to bring such determination to troops already weary from fighting?

Covering the additional challenges Grant faced from his own administration, fellow officers, and traitors to the Northern cause, Laver explains clearly the path Grant took to overcome these obstacles. Laver gave a very balanced view of Grant, not hero worship nor whitewashing his flaws, I came away feeling like I really understood the whole course of Grant's command.

I highly recommend this book for a reader just getting started in their understanding of the Civil War, and for the reader who has read a great deal of highly detailed material. I read everything I can about the Civil War, and this book was like putting in a foundation block in my understanding. Solid, clear and well organized, it made it easy for me to see the big picture of Grant's campaigns.

The narrator, J. Scott Bennett, was absolutely perfect for this book. His voice, pace and down home style was like having a very interesting and knowledgeable friend lay out all the information on how Grant managed his command and won the war. It was really the perfect listening experience.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Learning to lead

I really enjoyed Laver's writing style. He gave the drudgery of military marching life and vigor. This book touches on Grant's early years in the military, from graduating in the bottom half of his class at West Point to his early days in the military. Grant often got bored and wanted to continue to push forward. Once the Civil War started grant was pulled back into military service. As he lead troops he often learned from his failures. Which he had many of them. But each new battle brought new challenges and as he got promoted up the rants Lincoln took a liking to him because he was constantly pushing to snuff out the Confederate resistance.

I also really enjoyed the narration in this book. Often NF like this can be a little dry but Bennett gives extra life to the well-written story.

"This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review."

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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A Great Teaching Tool

I enjoyed listening to this book which is pretty much about Grant's military career. However, this is done with an unbiased view. Mr. Laver has done his research and has done it well. This would be an excellent source for those wanting to know more about Ulysses S Grant's military career and not much more. It's wonderfully done and the narrator does a great job as well. I felt I should be sitting on the floor or at a desk while listening to this book, as it felt I was attending a well delivered lecture (in a good way).

I was given this free review copy audio book at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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GREAT CONCISE BOOK ABOUT GRANT'S MILITARY CAREER

I've always had a fascination for the Civil War, and I really enjoyed listening to this audio book and learning more about Grant's part in this tumultuous time in American history. Despite attempts today to "forget" or "destroy" some U.S. History that some find "offensive," I think it's VERY IMPORTANT to learn about what happened during those times, and use that wisdom to avoid making those mistakes in the future. If you take it away, the lesson doesn't get learned. Ulysses Grant is a fascinating man, and this book gave a concise, detailed account of his military leadership. I absolutely love J. Scott Bennett as a narrator, I've listened to several of his works and he gets it every time. Great talent! I'd recommend this to anyone wanting to learn a little more about Grant, fascinating stuff! :)
I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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The Leadership of U.S. Grant....Sort Of.

If you're looking for a book that covers the leadership skills of Grant throughout his life, this isn't it. This book only deals with his military career including a battle-by-battle review of each of the Civil War battles Grant fought it. The book is exhaustively researched and well written and an enjoyable read but it is only Grant as a military man and nothing more.

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Excellent!

The was an amazing listen! Grant is covered with no apparent bias... The realities of the war, the consequences and the achievements are masterfully explained. Being a Civil War Buff, I expected to find some inaccuracies to the timeline, as is often the fact when covering the Individual versus the actual War... This book delighted Me with it's accuracies. The Narrator has a very pleasant voice, and clearly articulates... He also possesses a keen knack for intonations... I thoroughly enjoyed this book! This book was provided free of charge in exchange for a fair and honest review... Thank You!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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The Leadeship of Ulysses S. Grant

I enjoyed this account of Grants early days and how he got to be who he was.It was well researched and written.Narration by J. Scott Bennett was perfect.
I was given this book by the narrator,author or publisher free for an honest review.

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Incredibly Fascinating

So much history I did not know. US Grant was The Man! LOVED LOVED LOVED this book!!!

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Interesting military history story

This is an interesting audiobook that easily and clearly lays out how Grant managed to lead the Union troops to victory in the US Civil War. The author shows both the good and bad of Grant’s personality and decisions, without sensationalizing his character. He provides a well organized, clear picture of Grant’s military career in the Civil War, an overview of some of the main battles and a little about his life before he joined the military. The narrator, J. Scott Bennett, was perfect for this book. His pace, intonation and voice drew you into the story and easily kept your attention. If you like military history, then you will like this story.