001: The Civil War: A Narrative: Volume 1: Fort Sumter to Perryville (Vintage Civil War Library)

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Best Civil War Book I've Ever Read!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! - Shelby Foote has brought us the best book on the "War Between the States." First he explains the many causes of the war, and then takes you step by step through each battle of the war. There are 2 other books in this set so REMEMBER to read them also! If you are a serious student of the war or you enjoy American History, then you should DEFINITELY read these! Or if you want to read a good piece of literature then read this book
well worth the time - I had always assumed that the publisher's blurbs comparing Foote to Edward Gibbon were overblown.But now, having a good part of the 3 volume _Civil War_ under my belt, I'm not so sure. Foote is impossible to put down for all of the reasons that are usually mentioned-- his novelist's skill at unpacking the concealed drama in events, his sympathetic but measured assessment of the Southern cause. But I find his voice unique in yet another respect. Above all else, he is able to paint a convincing picture of the ambiguities of genius without lapsing into the typical smugness with which famous heroes are often cut down to size. Under Foote's guidance, we witness countless screw-ups and unsympathetic careerist maneuvers by the likes of Lincoln, Grant, Lee, and Stonewall Jackson. Nonetheless, something truly great about each of these figures emerges in a convincing way. The portrayal of Lincoln is especially remarkable: with the goody-goody storybook facade of Honest Abe stripp! ! ed away,...
These books are not true history - I don't know why some people are so defensive about Shelby Foote's books. One reviewer correctly points out that the books are full of mistakes and are not true history and people respond like protective parents. I suppose if you've labored through them you don't want to feel like your time was a waste. Well, if believing the fairy tale that these are good history books makes you feel better I guess that's fine. But they aren't. The issue isn't whether they are well written or whether the author makes the personalities come alive. The books are beautifully written and he does make personalities come alive, but the question is whether or not the sketches he brings to life are true to history. In most cases they are not. This is based as much on factual errors as on shallow adherence to two-dimensional stereotypes. The personalities Mr. Foote conjures up have great literary appeal (which makes sense since he is a novelist) but they are not true. Real historians try...