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|Format: DRM Protected ePub|
Vendor: Thomas Nelson
Publication Date: 2011
He was named after an enemy of the United States.
He was proslavery despite his loyalty to the Union. He burned and pillaged an already beaten foe on a march history will never forget.
If, as he famously said, "war is hell," William Tecumsah Sherman can be classified as a flamethrower of ruthless ferocity. Defined by his contradictions, Sherman achieved immortality in his role as Ulysses Grant's hammer in the Civil War. A failed banker and lawyer, Sherman found his calling with the outbreak of war in 1861. With indecision a common ailment among Union generals early the conflict, Sherman's temperment and unwavering focus on the mission at hand-preserving the Union-helped shift the fortunes of North and South.
Authors Agostino Von Hassell and Ed Breslin present Sherman as once man and phenomenon. From Bull Run to Shiloh, from Vicksburg to Chattanooga, and from Atlanta to Savannah, Sherman carved the Confederacy with a feral singularity of purpose. At times disheveled and informal to a fault, "Uncle Billy" became a hero whose legend only grew with allegations of villainy.
Ed Breslin is a writer living in New York and in the Hudson River Valley.
theTRuNorthern, VAAge: 35-44Gender: male4 Stars Out Of 5on the Price of SuccessFebruary 28, 2013theTRuNorthern, VAAge: 35-44Gender: maleQuality: 4Value: 3Meets Expectations: 4I've whole heartedly enjoyed the Generals series because each book has opened my eyes to the story of an heroic historical figure and detailed some practical and important leadership practices. And I'm honestly glad the editors included this entry in the series as well as it reveals the other side of leadership - one I'm far more familiar with.
Sherman was something of a scoundrel. One of those weaselly folks we all work with at some point in our lives who does everything they can to take credit for anything good that happens while disappearing completely when things go awry. Sherman did this at pretty much every turn of his career, military and otherwise. He failed time and time again in business and avoided military assignments he deemed destined for defeat. However, on the positive side, he did persist and he did eventually succeed. Unfortunately, even in his success, he failed as a leader - possibly because he was so determined to be loved by all and paranoid that he was hated by all. Despite his acumen for leadership, he chose to let his soldiers cross the line of humanity time and time again, justifying it as best he could.
Another great read from the series and another reminder that we need better History curriculum in schools.
- from trudatmusic[dot]com[slash]raw
junnelaranasAge: 18-24Gender: male3 Stars Out Of 5i just dont like it...September 26, 2012junnelaranasAge: 18-24Gender: maleQuality: 3Value: 4Meets Expectations: 3"William Tecumseh Sherman was an American soldier, businessman, educator and author. Sherman was not an abolitionist before the war and, like others of his time and background, he did not believe in "Negro equality." Before the war, Sherman at times even expressed some sympathy with the view of Southern whites that the black race was benefiting from slavery" this type of book usually have some shards of sympathy in dealing with the person under study, Sherman will have some insights into his military styles. I'm not a pro-war... A great read for someone who wants another view of Sherman and I could see this being a great resource for the older middle school student who needs to research the Civil War or Sherman himself. It gives a lot of insight into what Sherman's life was like from a young age as he just started out making his military career all the way to the battles that ultimately ended the war. I won't recommended the book but I won't also discourage you to read this.
CliffymaniaMichiganAge: 35-44Gender: male3 Stars Out Of 5Full of information, but tough readJune 5, 2012CliffymaniaMichiganAge: 35-44Gender: maleQuality: 4Value: 4Meets Expectations: 3When I had an opportunity to read "Sherman: The Ruthless Victory" I was intrigued and ready to read an engrossing tale of the history of General Sherman. There's a ton of information in the book, but unfortunately it's just not an engaging read.
General William Tecumseh Sherman led a controversial and contradictory life. (Introduction)
Agostino Von Hassell and Ed Breslin have compiled this history of Sherman that paints the picture of man fiercely loyal to his country and strangely at odds with her cherished roots. Sherman didn't believe in God, he was an atheist. He did not fight the Civil War to free the slaves. He fought the war to save the Union and punish the rebels.
"The punishment for this rebellion had to be severe." (Introduction)
Hassel and Breslin, in the introduction, tell us that Sherman was logical, self-serving, and crazy. Sherman's behavior was extreme in the war and the proposed that it was partly due to the a history of mental illness in his mother's family. Sherman as much as admitted to being as crazy as Grant was a drunk.
All this would seem to lend itself to an exciting story if not morbidly so, but this book drags along. Maybe I'm too accustomed to overly dramatized events, but the writing in this book is dry and I had a difficult time getting through it. However, for the avid Civil War buff I can testify that this book holds a lot of information and it is all about Sherman. There is no straying into other stories, or events, everything in this book is about Sherman.
The authors make a sobering point about what can be learned from Sherman's life. Sherman's legacy inspired the generals of World War II and the naming of the Sherman tank was not simply to honor Sherman, but was a reflection of Sherman's character; unstoppable and indiscriminate.
"In remembering this troubling man, both his greater and his lesser nature must be kept in view. He was right in saying that "War is hell." Statesmen and military leaders should remember this phrase and take it as certainty that war is indeed an unleashing of the bloody, unrestrained passions of humanity. If statesmen heed this advice, then pondering the life of William Tecumseh Sherman will have borne fruit worthy of the labor, especially in light of Ernest Hemingway's bulls-eye observation that in modern wars there are no winners." (Aftermath and Legacy)
LeungAge: 25-34Gender: male4 Stars Out Of 5Good readApril 12, 2012LeungAge: 25-34Gender: maleQuality: 5Value: 3Meets Expectations: 4Many people have made the point that, for all their alleged disdain for "revisionist" history, those who hold to a "Southern" view of the war are themselves embracing an explicitly revisionist historical narrative. It's a narrative that was carefully crafted in the decades following the Civil War to exonerate the Confederate cause, depict Southern leaders in the most flattering and noble way possible, and to undermine or denigrate the Union effort to highlight the contrast. This effort, which lies at the core of the Lost Cause, probably reached its zenith in the second decade of the 20th century. But with a few concessions to modern sensibilities Ã¢â¬â e.g., "faithful slaves" have now become "black Confederate soldiers" Ã¢â¬â the narrative remains largely as it was a century ago, and is held dear by many. But great longevity doesn't make a revisionist narrative any less revisionist.
Despite having read most of major accounts of the American Civil War, I had not fully understood the central role played by Sherman until I read the book. It makes it clear that Sherman's appreciation of the futility of attacking entrenched positions and his consequently developed strategy and tactics turned the tide for the North, salvaged the 1864 election for Lincoln, and saved perhaps tens of thousands of Union and Rebel lives. He also points out that the same insight accounts for most of Lee's success, i.e., Lee won battles in which he enticed the North to attack entrenched positions (e.g. Fredricksburg) and lost when he attacked entrenched positions himself (e.g. Gettysburg). Hart fully disposes of the popular prejudice held widely in the South that Sherman's approach to war was more inhumane than the alternative of massive blood letting which was by virtually every other Civil War general. It is rare to find a historical account containing so much insight.
LouieKingman, AZAge: 55-65Gender: male4 Stars Out Of 5Good, if Biased bio of Sherman's lifeSeptember 27, 2011LouieKingman, AZAge: 55-65Gender: maleQuality: 5Value: 4Meets Expectations: 3Sherman: The Ruthless Victor by Agostino Von Hassell & Ed Breslin, is another in The Generals Series by Thomas Nelson. This is a series of short books looking at the lives of some of the greatest generals in American history. The books are supposed to be fair and balanced (to coin a phrase!), and give a good introductory look at these men for anyone interested. Please note: I received my review copy free, and read this on my Kindle.
Biographies are difficult to write for a lot of reasons. Chief among them is the inevitable subjective point of view of their authors. In almost all cases you are either going to like or dislike the person you are writing about, and that like or dislike will color your book. I get the distinct impression that the authors of this book don't "like" Sherman, and it shows. However, they do attempt to show both sides of most major arguments.
I really appreciated that they didn't get to Sherman's service in the Civil War until about half way through the book. I learned a lot about Sherman's early life, and that's one of the strongest points of this book. You get to see how his life was shaped by his rough childhood.
Then comes the Civil War, and the authors cover most of Sherman's major actions in a fair amount of detail. They constantly compare him in an unfavorable light to Grant. This is one the areas where I felt their "dislike" of Sherman colored their writing.
Once the war ends, so does the book - or nearly! They only have one chapter after that to discuss his later life and legacy. There should have been more, but I understand the confines the length of these books place on the authors. They even take on B.H. Liddell Hart's very favorable biography of Sherman here! I'll say one thing for the authors, they don't lack guts!
I recommend this book, in spite of what I see as it's flaws. Every book has them, and they do bring to light a lot of material about Sherman's early life. I hope you'll give it a read