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4.12 of 5 stars 4.12  ·  rating details  ·  678 ratings  ·  28 reviews
America's Civil War raged for more than four years, but it is the three days of fighting in the Pennsylvania countryside in July 1863 that continues to fascinate, appall, and inspire new generations with its unparalleled saga of sacrifice and courage. From Chancellorsville, where General Robert E. Lee launched his high-risk campaign into the North, to the Confederates' las ...more
ebook, 720 pages
Published September 14th 2010 by HarperCollins e-books (first published June 18th 2002)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,222)
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Christopher H.
This was an amazing book, and ever-so-well written! I have been to Gettysburg National Military Park several times over the course of my adult life, and I never fail but to be astounded at the overall importance of this battle and the Union Army being able to ultimately prevail over the Confederate Army during this battle on July 1-3, 1863. The other important element of this battle that Americans need to understand is the sheer ferocity with which this battle was fought between the two sides. I ...more
Charles Cummings
If you are looking for more details on the battle than is in the Shelby Foote or Bruce Catton Civil War volumes, than this is the place to be. One objection was the lack of footnotes, etc. However, if you are just interested in the story and you aren't actually going to check up on the author's work, then it really doesn't matter, in my opinion.
Mac McCormick III
My most recent read was Noah Andre Trudeau's Gettysburg: A Testing of Courage. Many books have been written about the battle at Gettysburg, so you're easily forgiven if you ask - why bother reading another one? The answer is that I previously read Trudeau's book Southern Storm: Sherman's March to the Sea and enjoyed it tremendously. Southern Storm was compelling and detailed, including the perspectives of not only the northern invaders and southern defenders but the population they were fighting ...more
In my opinion, The best book I have ever read on the Battle of Gettysburg. What I truly liked about this book was that it was broken down on the dates the battle was fought. Very detailed and Highly Recommended.
This book was exactly what I was looking for or what I thought I was looking for. Having visited the Gettysburg battlefield a few years ago and having an intense interest in the Civil War for a few years before that, this book seemed right up my alley. And once again, it was all of that and more.

I was looking for an in depth overview (if that's not too much of an oxymoron as it sounds). I wanted something between detailing every soldier's days leading up to, during, and after the battle on the
I find myself repeatedly drawn to works of history that focus on a single event or episode (e.g., the 1949 baseball season, the Chicago World's Fair, the siege of Boston) and offer a rich narrative of that moment in time. Tackling the entire American Civil War seemed a bit much, so picking up Trudeau's account of this single battle seemed the best start. During just three days somewhere in the Pennsylvania countryside so many Americans died and the trajectory of the entire war pivoted (even if i ...more
A great history book outlining the battle and the thoughts and emotions of the men who led it. It made me consider the "fog of war" and how little commanders knew about the movement of troops during battles.

Details: Truedau follows the Union and Confederate forces as they converge on Gettysburg Pennsylvania for what became the defining battle of the Civil War. I thought one of the most interesting points is the lack of respect that how built up in the Confederate command structure from beating m
Josh Liller
I have been an avid reader all my life, but in 2009 I picked up Gettysburg by Stephen W. Sears before my first visit to the Gettysburg battlefield. My visit there (and to Antietam) coupled with Sears' excellent writings were a life-changing experience for me.

When reading about Gettysburg in preparation for an upcoming presentation, rather than reread Sears and I decieded to pick up another book on the battle (this one). I first read Trudeau's writing in his excellent Southern Storm: Sherman's Ma
John Fitzgerald
Briefly, I found this to be an excellent book on the Battle. It is more of a coverage of the Battle-with almost no discussion of "post battle" portion of the campaign. That's fine-other books (Sears' for example) cover that action in great detail-and have somewhat less detail in the examination of July 1-3.

The book reads a little more like a novel at time as Trudeau moves to different areas of the battlefield to let you know what is occurring at a given time. I. This regard I found the book muc
I admit it I'm a little obsessed. J and I went to the battlefield last winter when visiting her family...I went away and read a lot about it. Now I'm forcing her to go back this winter and listen to me tour her around. You should send her your deepest sympathies. This book does an amazing job of describing the battle and is loaded with oral history. The best book I've read about the battle thus far..
Doug Mcnair
A long and really, REALLY detailed account of the Battle of Gettysburg that nevertheless manages to hold one's interest on the strength of the author's writing style. Numerous maps keep the reader from losing track of the all-important troop movements. A very good read for military history buffs or for general readers wanting to learn about the largest battle ever fought in the New World.
This is a very detailed account of the Battle of Gettysburg. However, the strict chronological sequencing of the book can be difficult to follow and frustrating at times... especially when trying to use the book as a reference. Overall, though, Trudeau does a great job of re-telling those three summer days in July through primary sources and a vivid narrative.
Ross Bishop
The best book on Gettysburg and one of the best books on the Civil war that has been written. Well written, concise, lots of appropriate detail that contributes greatly to understanding what happened. Trudeau handles the incredible complexity of hundreds of brigades in varying conflicts with remarkable clarity. His historical perspective is exceptional.
Ma'lis Wendt
Another book by Margaret Edwards' winner, Jim Murphy. His explanation of the battle of Gettysburg from the viewpoint of two soldiers, one Federal and one Confederate, give a personal touch to this battle. He uses Lincoln's speech as bookends to put the battle in perspective of the Civil War and its aftermath.
Scott L.
One of the most comprehensive, yet readable books on the Gettysburg Campaign. Trudeau gives enough detail to keep the story interesting without getting bogged down in the minutia that renders other authors almost unreadable. This would be one of the Gettysburg books that I could easily recommend.
Mike Lanski
A remarkable look at what has to be the turning point of the Civil War, Trudeau gives us a time frame look at each of the 3 days plus immediately following the battle at Gettysburg. A timely read on the 150th anniversary of this historic battle.
Reads more like a novel and is definitely up there with Sears. Although, having read this with previous background knowledge, I wonder if the style might confuse readers not familiar with the battle. Very enjoyable and hard to put down!
Eddie Marceau
Good. Enjoyed the citizen's perspective.
Trudeau has produced one of the most brilliantly exciting battle histories I have ever read. This absorbing book is not only well researched, it is also wonderful storytelling.
Good, worthwhile but it has been a while since I have read it and I cannot remember specifics. Not the best book on Gettysburg. Cf. High Tide at Gettysburg for my favorite.
Best single volume book history about Gettysburg. Learned a lot on new things I never knew and wrote list for locations in Gettysburg for 150th Anniversary in July 2013.
Matthew Poole
It was a very thorough look into the events that led up to the final battle. It was very well written and it kept my attention throughout.
Good brigade by brigade run down on the battle. Kept my interest in spite of it being a mostly point by point description.
John M.
This is the best book on the battle I've read. Lots of maps and individual vignettes really breathe life into the history.
As much of a minute-by-minute account of Gettysburg battle I could find, and found it very descriptive and comprehensive.
David Adams
Along with Bloody Roads South, my favorite book from Trudeau. Very well done.
John E
Very readable like all of Trudeau's works.
Aug 20, 2008 Mindy rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone interested in a very detailed account of the battle
Wow. I thought I knew a lot about the Battle of Gettysburg, but this large book really went into detail regarding the days before and after the battle, as well as the battle itself. I'll have to read it again to get the full effect, but it was a very educational read.
Jeffrey marked it as to-read
Mar 03, 2015
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  • Chancellorsville
  • Gettysburg--The Second Day
  • The Gettysburg Campaign: A Study in Command
  • The Battles for Spotsylvania Court House and the Road to Yellow Tavern, May 7--12, 1864
  • Vicksburg, 1863
  • This Terrible Sound: The Battle of Chickamauga
  • Grant and Sherman: The Friendship That Won the Civil War
  • General James Longstreet: The Confederacy's Most Controversial Soldier
  • Stand Firm Ye Boys from Maine: The 20th Maine and the Gettysburg Campaign
  • Lincoln and His Admirals
  • Hallowed Ground: A Walk at Gettysburg
  • Lincoln and His Generals
  • Stars in Their Courses: The Gettysburg Campaign, June-July 1863
  • Gettysburg: The Last Invasion
  • The Coming Fury
  • Fields of Honor: Pivotal Battles of the Civil War
  • Pickett's Charge
American Civil War historian. He has won the Civil War Round Table of New York's Fletcher Pratt Awar and the Jerry Coffey Memorial Book Prize. A former executive producer at National Public Radio, he lives in Washington, DC.
More about Noah Andre Trudeau...
Southern Storm Bloody Roads South: The Wilderness to Cold Harbor, May-June 1864 The Last Citadel: Petersburg, Virginia, June 1864-April 1865 Like Men of War: Black Troops in the Civil War Robert E. Lee: Lessons in Leadership

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