Fields of Honor: Pivotal Battles of the Civil War
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Fields of Honor: Pivotal Battles of the Civil War

3.95 of 5 stars 3.95  ·  rating details  ·  112 ratings  ·  17 reviews
Few historians have ever captured the drama, excitement, and tragedy of the Civil War with the headlong elan of Edwin Bearss, who has won a huge, devoted following with his extraordinary battlefield tours and eloquent soliloquies about the heroes, scoundrels, and little-known moments of a conflict that still fascinates America. Antietam, Shiloh, Gettysburg: these hallowed...more
Paperback, 448 pages
Published June 5th 2007 by National Geographic (first published May 2nd 2006)
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Mr. Bearss truly shows his expertise, but unless one is themselves something of a scholar of the Civil War this book would be very difficult to follow.
The narrative is no where near as powerful as it might be if there was better development of the characters. I know this is not fiction, but without a map to consistently refer to or the knowledge of a War College graduate this book just isn't as user friendly as other Civil War Classics -- Killer Angels, Shelby Foote's III Volume Classic etc.
Charles Phillips
Bearss is a true expert. Unfortunately, like many experts on the Civil War, he forgets what is important to most readers and smothers us with detail that allows him to showcase his voluminous knowledge. Do I really need to know that a specific officer went to Oberlin? What bearing does it have on what he did or didn't do? If the fact that he didn't go to West Point is supposed to tell me something, then I have no idea what it is. What about company commanders? Do they really have to be identifie...more
I only read the chapter on Gettysburg. The book is written by a battlefield guide who knows what he is about. The chapter is a good summary of the battle, for someone who does not want to read more, or for someone who wants a short, snappy summary.
I've tried to read this book twice now, and was always thoroughly interested after the first chapter, yet after that I found myself lost. It seemed like the author was just talking a little too fast for a novice civil war fan like myself to follow along. Don't get me wrong, this book is packed with details, it's just not easy for me to read. I've read Shelby Foote's Civil War Narratives and found them a hundred times easier to follow than this.
Mark Neuer
Bearss takes you on a tour of the Civil wars major Battles. His anecdotal manor makes this an enjoyable read. Would have given it five Stars but not quite up to the caliber of Foote. Bears tends to leave out a lot of detail which makes this an easier read but leaves the reader kind of in a fog.
But Still an informative piece and worth the read
Michael Hansen
Great book, I really enjoyed it.

Favourite quote "Now, we all know who won at Waterloo, and it wasn't the French" on Beauregards Napoleonic approach at Shiloh.

Makes you want to learn more on the different battles. Definitely a must read. Great appetizer for further studies on the civil war battles.
I thought that Ed did a pretty good Job in writing Field of Honor. In the chapter about the the battle of First Manassas He left out the part about Sullivan Ballou and his letter to his wife in Smithfield, RI. Liked reading about about the salvage of the Union gunboat Cairo back in the earl 1960's.
An in-depth but conversational look at the pivotal battles of the American Civil War, with many interesting side notes on the various personalities and decisions made, those what-ifs that hindsight and the distance of time can provide.
Isaac F
There is alot of stuff you can learn from this book. It talks about John Browns raid of Harpers ferry. Chase also said he would read this book which it means it must be good.
The Civil War's greatest hits. Listen to a bit of one of Edwin C. Bearss' battlefield tours so you can hear his voice as you read.
Might be that reading Battle Cry of Freedom made this one pale. There is an annoying 'you are there' aspect as well.
Nov 23, 2008 Hartley rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Hartley by: Meet Ed at Civil War Round Table
Before going on a tour of Gettysburg with Ed Bears thought it a good idea to read hi book.
A great companion to other histories to bring these experiences to life.
Key battles and unbelievable stories. A great historical read.
Great book, one of the best about the civil war.
Mar 29, 2011 Steve is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
I have just started this book.
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