" An updated edition of this concise yet comprehensive history of the Civil War, written by a distinguished historian of the conflict. Charles Roland skillfully interweaves the story of battles and campaigns with accounts of the major political, diplomatic, social, and cultural events of the epoch and insightful sketches of the leading actors. Of prime interest are the contrasts he draws between the opposing presidents and generals. What traits, he asks, made Lincoln superior to Davis as a war leader? How were Union military leaders able to forge a more effective fighting force, a more comprehensive strategy than their opponents? Roland's thoughtful anwers and his recognition of the contadictions of human nature and the interpaly of intention and chance raise this book above a mere recounting of military events. The story of the Civil War is the epic of the American people. Never has it been told more movingly.
"Provides a perspective, depth, and insight remarkable for a book of its size and scope." -- Florida Historical Quarterly
"As an introduction, you couldn't ask for a better place to start, and for the veteran Civil War reader there are new questions to ponder." -- Richmond Times-Dispatch
"May be the best single-volume short history of the war." -- Southern Partisan
"The best concise narrative of the war currently available." -- Journal of Mississippi History
"New buffs will find this probably the best single volume with which to begin their journey into the war. Teachers will find it a splendid introductory." -- Journal of Southern History
"Roland's prose is clear, and especially in the battle segments, quite readable." -- Library Journal
"An excellent display of clear, succinct prose... Masterfully groups the myriad of battles into a series of campaigns that introduce all the key commanders and strategic decisions." -- North Carolina Historical Review
""This volume is surely the best brief history of the United States and the Confederate State at war."" -- Emory M. Thomas
"The best introduction to the nation's great trauma." -- Gary W. Gallagher
"An extraordinary synthesis by one of the most respected historians in the field." -- James I. Robertson Jr.
"An American Iliad is a unique addition to a conflict that has filled thousands of pages in the past century. The book is unique because it looks at the entire Civil War in a highly readable and narrative style and in only one volume...Perhaps the most interesting aspect of Roland's book is his comparison of Confederate leaders to Union leaders with a focus on why Lincoln, Grant, and Sherman were ultimately successful on a strategic and tactical level...The book also splendidly outlines the key battles of the Civil War and the impact they would have on the Union and Confederacy...This is an excellent book for those wanting to rediscover the American Civil War, and to launch the tremendous amount of reading required to understand this conflict so integral to the American character." -- The Waterline
"Roland wonderfully synthesizes the work and study of generations to produce a sharp and incisive study that will last." -- William C. Davis
""This is an excellent book for those wanting to re-discover the American Civil War, and to launch the beginning of an intensive amount of reading to understand this conflict that is integral to the American character."" -- Great Lakes Bulletin
"Roland's book is the starting point for a serious student to begin his study of the Civil War." -- Larry Freiheit, Roll Call to Destiny Book Contest