Why did I love this book?
If I could recommend one book to provide what would amount to a course on the Civil War, it would be this massive tour de force. This three-volume non-fiction history of the Civil War covers the entire span of the conflict in exacting and vivid detail. Shelby Foote was already a noted novelist and historian when became ever more popular for his appearances on the Ken Burns televised series about the war. Foote adeptly covers the military operations in both the Eastern and Western theaters of operation, with mention of how the politics of both sides factored into the outcomes of battles, and eventually of the war itself. This is a well-researched, historically accurate depiction of a brutal, unrelenting war written very much in the appealing style of a novelist. With over a million words comprising the three volumes, it is an investment of time that, for Civil War enthusiasts, will pay dividends with each turn of the 2,968 pages.