The Last Full Measure
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Last Full Measure (The Civil War: 1861-1865 #3)

4.18 of 5 stars 4.18  ·  rating details  ·  8,998 ratings  ·  222 reviews
In the Pulitzer prize–winning classic The Killer Angels, Michael Shaara created the finest Civil War novel of our time. In the bestselling Gods and Generals, Shaara’s son, Jeff, brilliantly sustained his father’s vision, telling the epic story of the events culminating in the Battle of Gettysburg. Now, Jeff Shaara brings this legendary father-son trilogy to its stunning co...more
Paperback, 640 pages
Published May 2nd 2000 by Ballantine Books (first published December 12th 1991)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Last Full Measure, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Last Full Measure

The Killer Angels by Michael ShaaraGone with the Wind by Margaret MitchellBattle Cry of Freedom by James M. McPhersonThe Civil War by Shelby FooteCold Mountain by Charles Frazier
Best Civil War Books
10th out of 504 books — 552 voters
Catch-22 by Joseph HellerAll Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria RemarqueSlaughterhouse-Five by Kurt VonnegutFor Whom the Bell Tolls by Ernest HemingwayThe Killer Angels by Michael Shaara
Best War Novels
59th out of 541 books — 528 voters


More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Don Nelson
Of the three books Gods and Generals, The Killer Angels and The Last Full Measure - The Last Full Measure was, for me, the most painful.
In this book the reader is introduced to Ulysses S. Grant and discovers the metal of the man. General Robert E. Lee continues to be the stalwart leader of the southern army. The reader comes to understand the passion of these men as well as the Union commander Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain who came away from Gettysburg a hero. Chamberlain is the only one of these...more
Mom
I still enjoyed the historical information but I did not care for his writing style--it lacks the flair for writing in comparison to his father's book. He overuses phrases of his own making that often confuse the reader left not knowing who he is talking about or who is doing the talking. Sometimes the pace flows and keeps the reader interested, and other times it lags on and on to the point of frustration. He tries to describe the feelings of the characters when he couldn't possibly know what w...more
Julie
This is how the majority of the characters talk in this book: "There are.... a lot...... of periods...... in between..... words...."

I read the first 150-200 pages or so of this with such gusto! It wasn't as good as "The Killer Angels," obviously, but it was perfectly readable and exciting. Then things got sluggish. Chapter after chapter where absolutely nothing of importance or interest happenned. A battle was fought. Generals muse on death and destruction. Chamberlain is non-existent; there is...more
booklady
The Last Full Measure takes its title from words in Lincoln’ indescribable Gettysburg Address:
“It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us-that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion-that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died i
...more
Pearl
"The Last Full Measure" is the final book in the Civil War trilogy by the Shaaras. Michael Shaara, the father, started it all when he wrote wrote the Pulitzer-Prize winning "The Killer Angels" about the battle at Gettysburg. He passed away before he could write more. His son Jeff then wrote about events leading up to Gettysburg and next what followed after Gettysburg. Is "The Last Full Measure" as good as "The Killer Angels"? Not quite, but perhaps that's not even a fair question.

"The Killer Ang...more
David
This is a more than satisfying conclusion to the Shaara family Civil War Trilogy that chronologically begins with Jeff's "Gods and Generals", and continued with his late father Michael's masterful account of Gettysburg in the "Killer Angels". While the previous books focused on four narrators each, this third book by Jeff Shaara drops the count down to three, and for the most part two. If there is a flaw to this book, it is that we are not given enough of the fascinating and admirable Joshua Cha...more
Rafe
I loved Michael Shaara's book about Gettysburg, The Killer Angels, and so it was with a lot of anticipation (and a bit of anxiety) that I started reading his son Jeff's companion volumes. Overall, I don't like them. I wish I did. I want to, very much. But I keep finding them overwritten, too much telling, not enough showing, and sometimes so sprawling and incoherent that I, someone who has studied the Civil War in detail and knows a fair amount about it, have trouble keeping track of who is doin...more
Laura
Just arrived from USA trough BM.

Even if I haven't read his father's book The Killer Angels, I was able to follow this magnificent epic based on the American Civil War.

General Lee's surrender to General Grant was very touching and very well described by the author.

His American Revolutionary War (1770-1783) series is also memorable and unforgettable.

Cheryl
Like his father before him with Killer Angels, Jeff Shaara weaves a masterful portrait focusing on Lee, Grant and Chamberlain in the closing days of the war. The battles are detailed and precise; the men are real and fascinating. Highly recommended for both civil war buffs & historical fiction fans.
Jackson
This work suffers from the same flaws as God and Generals. Shaara simply fails to reproduce the genius of his father. The only book in this trilogy that needs to be read is Michael Shaara's original "The Killer Angels."
Kathy Stone
I really enjoyed reading about the last 18 months of the Civil War in Northern Virginia. Yes, the Confederate Army was starving and that was probably the biggest contributing factor to the surrender at Appomattox Courthouse in April 1865, but the book points out something interesting that is not explained in Schools. The Southern States fought the war over "states rights", but that is a dividing issue rather than a unifying issue. Jefferson Davis did not have power to force the Confederate State...more
Jerry Caldwell
In the Last Full Measure, Jeff continues from where he left off (not literally - there is a gap in time) in Gods and Generals; writing a great book about the Civil War, bringing famous historical characters to life.

In this novel you will gain an appreciation for what must have been going through the minds of Lee and Grant as the war neared its fait-full end. Though I did not enjoy this book quite as much as Gods and Generals, it was still a very good read. I especially enjoyed Jeff's portrayal o...more
Suzanne
Jeff Shaara is truly a master at depicting the intricacies of war. In The Last Full Measure, he takes on the final battles of the Civil War, and what surely must be going through the heads of the most notable military figures of these conflicts.

This book is the last part of the trilogy that began with Jeff’s father, Michael Shaara. And like the Pulitzer Prize winning parent, Jeff Shaara takes on the sequels to The Killer Angels with a thoroughly researched and highly exciting take on the events...more
CJ
he Last Full Measure is the third in the Shaaras trilogy of the American Civil War (Killer Angels written by father Michael Shaara about the battle of Gettysburg and Gods and Generals, Jeff Shaara's book on the beginning of the war) and it details the years following the battle of Gettysburg. The story is told mostly through the eyes of Robert E. Lee, Joshua Laurence Chamberlain, and brings in Ulysses S. Grant, though there are chapters from the perspective of other figures as well.

The book is e...more
Jake
I had a chance to shake hands with Jeff Shaara at a Civil War reenactment in Gettysburg prior to the release of his first novel Gods and Generals . He was autographing copies of a new edition of The Killer Angels , his late father's Pulitzer Prize winning novel. Hmmm. Anyway, he seemed like a gentleman.

I’m rather cynical about Jeff Shaara’s great success as a rare coin dealer turned novelist. But I have to confess, in his second outing he does pretty well. I enjoyed reading The Last Full Measure...more
Dick Gullickson
This is the last book of the Shaara trilogy of the civil war. It focuses on the end game with most of the emphasis on the time after Grant’s appointment as commander in chief of the Union Army in April, 1864. This book is especially fascinating for Wilderness area residents with its discussion of the Mine Run Campaign, the Battle of the Wilderness, Spotsylvania Courthouse, and the final phase of the civil war as the noose tightens around Richmond and Petersburg. The biggest star in the book afte...more
Steven Peterson
Jeff Shaara's "The Last Full Measure" completes a Civil War trilogy. The first volume, "The Killer Angels," was authored by Shaara's father and focused on the battle of Gettysburg. After his death, the second volume, "Gods and Generals," explored the evolution of the Civil War up until the epochal struggle at Gettysburg (authored by Jeff Shaara).

This book looks at the final years of the Civil War, after the Confederate defeat at Gettysburg. As is usual with a Shaara war novel, several character...more
Mickey
I loved this book! The writing was so powerful that the characters came alive for me -- I cared about what happened to them. The fictionalization fleshed out what could have been just boring names in a history book. The encounter between Gen. Grant and the dying man sitting beside a tree after the Cold Harbor battle, the description of Gen. Chamberlain issuing the "Carry Arms!" command to his men as the defeated Confederates laid down their muskets -- very moving accounts. It was fascinating to...more
LemonLinda
This is the third and last in a trilogy of Cilvil War books authored by the Shaaras (father and son). Following the critical acclaim which came posthumously to the father for The Killer Angels, the quintessential book detailing the battle of Gettysburg, the son wrote the prequel and this one which is the sequel to his father's book. It covers the war following Gettysburg through to the surrender at Appomattox Courthouse. Like the others, this novel is told from the perspective of the generals fr...more
Sean
The Shaara family Civil War trilogy continues in The Last Full Measure. In The Killer Angels, father Michael Shaara told the story of the battle of Gettysburg and events leading up to it. Jeffrey Shaara completes the trilogy with the prequel Gods and Generals and this book–the sequel.

The Last Full Measure picks up after Gettysburg, as Lee leaves Pennsylvania and begins a series of battles against his new opponent–Ulysses S. Grant. After losing Gettysburg and still trying to recover from the loss...more
Matt
Jeff Shaara completes the Civil War three-book sandwich he and his father wrote, wrapping up the tales from the bloodiest war in which the United States had been involved up to that point. Shaara's storytelling takes the reader inside the lines of troops, generals, battle plans, and even strategies to defeat the other side. He illustrates the progress of both sides by personalising the story, using characters on both sides of the fighting to bring a more complete and in-depth analysis and presen...more
Sam Nock
Feb 13, 2012 Sam Nock is currently reading it
This book has many main characters because it contains ongoing asides where characters from the North (Union Army) and characters from the South (Confederate Army) are plotting their tactics on how to win the post-Gettysburg battles. If I had to choose a main character it would be Confederate General Robert E. Lee because he is the major leader of the Southern Army and his intellect and great leadership display his huge effect on the Confederate Army. Towards the beginning of the book it says;
"...more
Steve
I am very glad that I read the Shaara Civil War Trilogy; Gods and Generals, Killer Angels, and The Last Full Measure. It has started me on the road to many more books on the Civil War. I had always been intimidated by the numerous volumes on the subject and never knew where to start. Well I recommend starting with book one and read all three.

The Last Full Measure picks up right after the Confederate defeat at Gettysburg. The Army of Northern Virginia led by General Robert E. Lee is slowly headin...more
Jonathan Lu
A worthy conclusion to the shaara trilogy that for the first time focuses on the persona of Grant and his stature compared to the other (primarily confederate) generals. What separates 2 armies between each other on the battlefield is truly the men leading them, with generals as the heroes celebrated throughout time. Very interesting as in this book having been written in 1998 is the first to address the changing nature of war itself - with the US civil war as really the first "modern" one that...more
Kevin
It took me a long time to read this book. I don't know if that is a product of being used to listening to audio books, my older age and ADD, or the book itself. Was that a squirrel? Oh never mind.

I did enjoy the book. Some thoughts that come to my head after having read it. First, a fictional book based on factual history can throw you off. You almost want to take some of the conversations in the book as factual history, but they are more likely the conjecture of the author and not what really o...more
Will Machemer
The Last Full Measure by Jeff Shaara and Michael Shaara is a historical fictional book about the civil war after Gettysburg in 1863. General Lee, Longstreet and Gordon were the main characters on the Rebels side. They had a series of losses after Gettysburg, up until then they had out smarted and maneuvered themselves to victory. Grant being promoted above Mead had a lot to do with this. Grant did what no other union general did and kept going forward despite many losses. He also promoted Sherid...more
Jacob
This is the sequel to "The Killer Angels" by Jeff Shaara's father, Michael Shaara. I have tried to read Jeff Shaara's work before with the "Rise to Rebellion", "Gods and Generals" and "The Rising Tide", failing to finish any of them. I forced myself to slog through this one simply because I have a renewed interest in the Civil War and wanted to cap off "The Killer Angels". I think I have finally learned my lesson. Whereas Michael Shaara wrote a story that I believed was being told by the partici...more
Janet
This book is the culmination of the trilogy and quite possibly the best of the three. Written through the perspective of the leaders of the Civil War, the strategy and emotions tell the story beyond the historical facts. The difficult decisions made by Lee and Grant provide perspectives on the war that helped me facilitate a better understanding of our nation’s history during as well as in the years following the war. I recommend these books to those who enjoy historical fiction.
Jack
This is the third and final installment of a civil war trilogy. It was as well written as either of the first two. I enjoy reading historical fiction and the historical novels written by Jeff Shaara (and his father, Michael) are among the best. Thoroughly researched and written from the personal viewpoint of the main characters, this novel presents an accurate, unbiased, easily digestible presentation of the final couple of years of America's civil war.
Dan
May 08, 2008 Dan rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: history
Excellent third and final book to this US civil war trilogy. My amazement at the length of the war and the bloodshed/carnage during the war only continued to expand with each page. The war just went on and on until the Confederate Army was literally reduced to almost nothing. It is less of a social implication on the war as the first two books and is more of a strategic recounting of the last 1/3 of the war. As in the previous two books the officers are described in wonderful detail and I found...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Never Call Retreat: Lee and Grant: The Final Victory (Gettysburg, #3)
  • The Killer Angels
  • Cain at Gettysburg
  • Shiloh
  • The Last Full Measure: The Life and Death of the First Minnesota Volunteers
  • From Manassas To Appomattox
  • Gettysburg
  • Lee
  • General James Longstreet: The Confederacy's Most Controversial Soldier
  • The Life of Johnny Reb: The Common Soldier of the Confederacy
  • The Bloody Ground (The Starbuck Chronicles, #4)
  • Look Away (U.S. Civil War, #1)
  • The Black Flower: A Novel of the Civil War
  • A Stillness at Appomattox
  • The Passing of Armies: An Account of the Final Campaign of the Army of the Potomac
14655
Jeff Shaara, a descendant of Italian immigrants, was born in New Brunswick, New Jersey ("Shaara" was originally spelled "Sciarra"). He grew up in Tallahassee, Florida, and graduated from Florida State University with a degree in Criminology. From age 16, Jeff operated a rare coin business, first out of his home, then in a retail store. After moving to Tampa, Jeff became one of the most widely know...more
More about Jeff Shaara...
Gods and Generals Rise to Rebellion The Rising Tide (World War II: 1939-1945, #1) The Glorious Cause To the Last Man: A Novel of the First World War

Share This Book

“world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but can never forget what they did here. It is for us, the living, rather to be dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they here gave the last full measure of devotion …” 1 likes
“Richmond serves one purpose. Lee must defend it. If we threaten the city, he will have to confront us. Lee will soon learn … we are not going away. If the newspapers and all those people in Washington must hear that, fine, I will write it down, send a letter to Stanton. You can deliver it yourself, read it to him, to all of them, make them understand what we are going to do. If it takes all summer … if it takes all year … it is only a matter of time before General Lee must face the consequences.” 1 likes
More quotes…