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Summary

A Pulitzer Prize-winning historian's acclaimed Civil War history of the complex man and controversial Union commander whose battlefield brilliance ensured the downfall of the Confederacy.

Preeminent Civil War historian Bruce Catton narrows his focus on commander Ulysses S. Grant, whose bold tactics and relentless dedication to the Union ultimately ensured a Northern victory in the nation's bloodiest conflict.

While a succession of Union generals - from McClellan to Burnside to Hooker to Meade - were losing battles and sacrificing troops due to ego, egregious errors, and incompetence, an unassuming Federal Army commander was excelling in the Western theater of operations. Though unskilled in military power politics and disregarded by his peers, Colonel Grant, commander of the Twenty-First Illinois Volunteer Infantry, was proving to be an unstoppable force. He won victory after victory at Belmont, Fort Henry, and Fort Donelson, while brilliantly avoiding near-catastrophe and ultimately triumphing at Shiloh. And Grant's bold maneuvers at Vicksburg would cost the Confederacy its invaluable lifeline: the Mississippi River. But destiny and President Lincoln had even loftier plans for Grant, placing nothing less than the future of an entire nation in the capable hands of the North's most valuable military leader.

Based in large part on military communiqués, personal eyewitness accounts, and Grant's own writings, Catton's extraordinary history offers listeners an insightful look at arguably the most innovative Civil War battlefield strategist, unmatched by even the South's legendary Robert E. Lee.

©1960 Little, Brown and Company, Inc. (P)2016 Audible, Inc.

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  • JLayland
  • 22-05-18

catton at his best

This is a great story, very well read!! more Catton. please! More Civil War please!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Jonathan and Mary Kennedy
  • 14-06-18

Phenomenal Biography

A follow up to Lloyd Lewis's Captain Sam Grant, Bruce Catton focuses on Ulysses Grant during the first two years of the American Civil War--from his becoming a Colonel of Volunteers all the way to the fall of Vicksburg. In that time, Grant is consistently underestimated by his superiors.

Unlike Chernow's gradle-to-the-grave biography, this books does spend too much time on Grant's drinking. Yes, it is established that Grant left the Army in disgrace because of his love of liquor, and Catton quickly dispels such stories as rumor. Whether they were or not is irrelevant, as Catton is more focused on the War. He doesn't get much into the politics of the era, except where necessary, but that is neither a benefit, nor a hindrance, to the work.

All-in-all, this is a book well worth the time.

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  • Roberta Rothwell
  • 11-01-18

Riveting history with a great narration

Where does Grant Moves South rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Excellent. The details of Grant's move down the Mississippi and the battles in Tennessee and Mississippi gives you insight into Grant's methodology and his ability to see strategy like no one else in the Civil War. Also Grant's tenaciousness in seeing that the war would only be won by destroying armies was essential to the success of the war.

What did you like best about this story?

The details of the weather, land and engineering difficulties endured and overcome by Grant's strategy and his ability to think outside the box. Gives you a different perspective about what the Union soldiers endured during this campaign. Bronson Pinchot does a fabulous job narrating this history. He emphasizes where necessary but lets the words speak for themselves. His performance lures you into the campaign and helps you to understand more fully the complexities of this western struggle for the Mississippi Valley. His narration is understated. He understands that the narrator is telling the story not acting it out.

Which character – as performed by Bronson Pinchot – was your favorite?

Grant of course. His emergence from obscurity to great general is the core of the story.

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

The moment when William Tecumseh Sherman convinced Grant not to resign his commission. Sherman did the country a great service.

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  • Richard Menard
  • 17-04-17

Grant Moves South

Author Bruce Catton was excellent at turning a historical event or period into a wonderful and interesting story, either to read in a book or listen to on audiobook.

The narrator, Bronson Pinchot, made the story-telling even more pleasing to the listener by moving the narrative along at just the right pace.

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  • Mark Mears
  • 22-11-16

Excellent

I've long wanted to read Bruce Catton's work. Finally audible has given me a format in which I can do so. I think Mr. Pinchot sometimes misplaced the emphasis in sentences, but it did not detract from my enjoyment.

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  • Orion Traders
  • 31-10-16

Another great book ruined by a poor reader...

The worst part is the phrasing, but the pronunciation is odd as though he is trying to pronounce a foreign language.

Too fine a book to be butchered this way...

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  • tonja koob
  • 04-08-16

Terrible narrator for a great book

great book, terrible narrator. the list of mispronounced words is too long to include here. Where was the editor, director, or someone who should have addressed this distracting problem? Narrator: spend less time on trying to add fake emotion to the narrative and more time with a pronunciation guide.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Odensvalkyrie
  • 02-08-16

Great book, horrible narration.

A great book almost ruined by the narrator. The narrator doesn't seem to understand that in English, questions end on an up inflection, not statements. He also pauses where no comma exists and than runs sentences together. This make it hard to follow what the writer is saying. His constant ending of sentence with up inflection, jumbling of sentences and mispronunciation of names made listening a chore. Too bad because this is a great, well written book. I still recommend this book, just be prepared.