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The Fateful Lightning Audiobook

The Fateful Lightning: A Novel of the Civil War

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Publisher's Summary

From New York Times best-selling author Jeff Shaara comes the riveting final installment in the Civil War series that began with A Blaze of Glory and continued in A Chain of Thunder and The Smoke at Dawn.

November 1864: As the Civil War rolls into its fourth bloody year, the tide has turned decidedly in favor of the Union. A grateful Abraham Lincoln responds to Ulysses S. Grant's successes by bringing the general east, promoting Grant to command the entire Union war effort while William Tecumseh Sherman now directs the Federal forces that occupy all of Tennessee.

In a massive surge southward, Sherman conquers the city of Atlanta, sweeping aside the Confederate army under the inept leadership of General John Bell Hood. Pushing through Northern Georgia, Sherman's legendary March to the Sea shoves away any Rebel presence, and by Christmas 1864 the city of Savannah falls into the hands of "Uncle Billy." Now there is but one direction for Sherman to go. In his way stands the last great hope for the Southern cause: General Joseph E. Johnston.

In the concluding novel of his epic Civil War tetralogy, Jeff Shaara tells the dramatic story of the final eight months of battle from multiple perspectives: the commanders in their tents making plans for total victory as well as the ordinary foot soldiers and cavalrymen who carried out their orders until the last alarum sounded. Through Sherman's eyes we gain insight into the mind of the general who vowed to "make Georgia howl" until it surrendered. In Johnston we see a man agonizing over the limits of his army's power and accepting the burden of leading the last desperate effort to ensure the survival of the Confederacy.

©2015 Jeff Shaara (P)2015 Random House Audio

What the Critics Say

Praise for Jeff Shaara's new Civil War series
A Blaze of Glory
"[An] exciting read.... This novel is meticulously researched and brings a vivid reality to the historical events depicted." (Library Journal)
"Dynamic portrayals [of] Johnston, Grant and William Tecumseh Sherman." (The Wall Street Journal)
A Chain of Thunder
"Shaara continues to draw powerful novels from the bloody history of the Civil War." (Kirkus Reviews)
"Shaara's historical accuracy is faultless, and he tells a good story.... The voices of these people come across to the reader as poignantly clear as they did 150 years ago." (Historical Novels Review)
The Smoke at Dawn
"Beautifully written.... Shaara once again elevates history from mere rote fact to explosive and engaging drama." (Bookreporter)
"Shaara's mastery of military tactics, his intimate grasp of history, and his ability to interweave several supporting narratives into a cohesive and digestible whole...will appeal to a broad range of historical and military fiction fans." (Booklist)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

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Performance


There are no listener reviews for this title yet.

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  • Jim In Texas!
    Austin, TX, United States
    07/11/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "An Excellent End to the Civil War"

    This is presumably the last novel in Jeff Shaara's Civil War novels. And it is the best of the lot.

    The story starts with General Sherman, leaving Atlanta and beginning this march across Georgia and up the east coast.

    It ends with the surrender of Confederate General Joe Johnston to Sherman in North Carolina.

    The story centers around four individuals involved in this campaign, each becomes a distinct and real individual.

    The narration and production values of this audio book are excellent.

    Highly recommended.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Liz
    03/10/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Sherman humanized"

    because scharra take the time to research his subjects they are no longer bullies or monsters and it is a credit to his writing that Sherman is no longer the scourge that history would have you believe he was.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • T. Stewart
    Tacoma, WA
    30/10/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent!"

    I am a big fan of Jeff Shaara's Civil War novels, having read his Dad's "The Killer Angels" and his "Gods and Generals" and "The Last Full Measure". I chose to listen to the four books that cover the "western" theater of the war and was very happy with the narration of Paul Michael. It was particularly good that Mr. Michael performed all four books, keeping continuity of the story and making transitions between volumes almost seamless. If you're interested in the Civil War and aren't already familiar with Mr. Shaara's work this is an excellent way to get acquainted.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Daniel N. Hill
    NY USA
    10/06/15
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    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent wrap up of the Civil War!"

    Takes you thru the end and again gives a good summation of the where, what and how of this time. Good conclusion of the western battles and logic to Sherman's methods to end this conflict.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • James
    17/08/17
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    Performance
    Story
    "informative in a personal way"

    Gave me insight to many perspectives of the war but tended. to be redundant in places

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Brian
    06/05/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent narration"

    Paul Michael does this entire series justice with his wonderful voice. His portrayal of Sherman and Grant is so well done I honestly felt like I got to know the real men. I'm going to miss this series and I'll likely go through them all again in the future.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Go Navy - Beat Army
    Eastern Shore of MD
    27/03/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Awesome"

    Another fantastic book by Jeff Sahara. Brilliantly performed by Paul Michael. Shaara weaves a magnificent book grounded in our history. Fantastic read/listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • John and Joanne Rhodes
    20/03/17
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    Story
    "Not as good as prior in series"

    Prior books in the series were great. But for this book, Sherman's character had already been developed and not much was added. The mistakes of the CSS remained the same. A lot of hopelessness in the talk and actions of the CSA. Some interesting material about the slaves transition challenge. If like me you are continuing the series, by all means, dive in. If not, read the first book in the series- outstanding.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    13/01/17
    Overall
    "Another great book"

    Jeff Shaara always provides a great historical read. Gives you new facts even when you think you know it all.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mermaid from Tennessee
    10/10/16
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    Performance
    Story
    "Civil war novel"

    I have listened to all of his USA war books. They are excellent as was this one. I had never read an account of this part of the civil war and thoroughly enjoyed it. I look forward to his next book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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