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Lone Star

A History of Texas and the Texans
Narrated by: John McLain
Length: 39 hrs and 17 mins
Categories: History, American
5 out of 5 stars (1 rating)

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Summary

Here is a must-listen history of the Lone Star State, together with an insider's look at the people, politics, and events that have shaped Texas from the beginning right up to our days. Never before has the story been told with more vitality and immediacy. Fehrenbach re-creates the Texas saga from prehistory to the Spanish and French invasions to the heyday of the cotton and cattle empires. He dramatically describes the emergence of Texas as a republic, the vote for secession before the Civil War, and the state's readmission to the Union after the War. In the 20th century oil would emerge as an important economic resource and social change would come. But Texas would remain unmistakably Texas, because Texans "have been made different by the crucible of history; they think and act in different ways, according to the history that shaped their hearts and minds."

©2000 T. R. Fehrenbach (P)2018 Tantor

Critic reviews

"Thought-provoking, highly original...a most distinctive chapter of American and Southern history." (Virginia Quarterly Review)

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Profile Image for JNW
  • JNW
  • 29-03-18

Top -10

The guy reading this book sounds just like the dramatic Top 10 guy on Youtube. The book is good, I just can't listen to the narrator.

12 people found this helpful

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  • Lmaris
  • 30-03-18

Narrator is painful to listen to - ruined book

The man apparently has never heard most of the proper nouns in the book. He doesn't come close to the French, Spanish, and Native American words, and makes an otherwise interesting story too painful to listen to.

I read this book 30+ years ago and looked forward to listening to the updated version only to find I can't stand to hear another word out of this man's mouth. I am sadly returning it after only a couple hours of listening.

Read to book. Don't waste your $$ or credits on the audible version.

10 people found this helpful

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Profile Image for Chris
  • Chris
  • 28-09-18

Remember Texas

This book is about a lot more than Texas. Fehrenbach tells a history of colonization in North America from about 1500 onward. The emphasis on Texas is interesting because it was a boundary area where Spanish, Anglo-Celtic, and Amerind cultures fought it out (not being a history buff, this book gave me a much better understanding of terms like Amerind and Anglo-Celtic). All the races had strengths, made mistakes, and had the great courage required to live on a frontier. All the people lived in an environment where decisions were often made based on how to kill or avoid being killed. In my mind, the phrase "Remember the Alamo" has been replaced by "Remember Texas"--rather than remembering a single battle, this book fills in a story that took place over centuries.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Shelley
  • 25-08-18

If you're proud to be a Texan, this is a must read

The book is well researched and extremely detailed. Even in the midst of painstaking attention to every nuance, it maintains a pace and excitement that will keep you listening. It is great to listen to a book that isn't boring and monotonous, like so many. The voice used inflection and even accents to help the stories flow.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Louie Z
  • 27-08-18

The narrator is just horrible

Sounds like I'm listening to a bad actor. No idea how the actual book is because the narration is just plain bad.

2 people found this helpful

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  • WW1 Researcher
  • 09-12-19

Better than good

Whether you are interested in the topic or not, Fehrenbach's work's are simply excellent. He does such an outstanding job or explaining and researching, that it is a joy to read any of his works.

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  • J.Brock
  • 27-10-19

Painful listen

I hate that I'm writing this negative review. Like all of my fellow history buffs, I consider all things history, regardless of time period, of potential interest. Fehrenbach's "This Kind of War" was a truly enthralling work dedicated to the Korean War. That book is one not to be missed. However, "Lone Star" is very difficult to listen to. It might be a much better read. So many of these lengthy history books are very difficult listens because they are hard to follow. One minute you're listening to a civil war era story, the next LBJ. And how you got there, you have no idea. Unless they're specific to one topic, like WWI or WWII, etc, it gets complicated. So once again, this is the problem here. It stayed entirely too long on one topic, like the Indian wars, and skimmed the 20th century in 2-3 hours. It's very hard to stay with the material, much less stay awake. Unfortunately, John McLain's narration adds a dry monotone that doesn't complement the book. His talents are better suited elsewhere.


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  • fiddler_gal
  • 05-09-19

Great early Texas History

I enjoyed this book. It took a while to get through but thoroughly enjoyed the detailed account of the people’s, cultures and lands of Texas. It was a bit lacking in the history of the state following 1900 and through modern times. An example, they found oil it created an industry, the end while the descriptions of the nuances of various farming practices in the 19th century were very detailed. The narration took a while to get used to as it was very slow and methodical. Overall a very good book.

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  • Jon
  • 03-09-19

couldn't stop listening

I've never heard a more comprehensive, detailed, well-written history of Texas. I listened any time I was in the car, exercising, etc. Loved it

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  • Daniel Ritz
  • 08-08-19

Great for historical context

Fehrenbach does a good job of explaining the Texas culture and how it was shaped. The history of recent times are best found in other books but I really enjoyed the book.