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Texian Iliad: A Military History of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836 (Texas Classics) Paperback – 1996
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"Hardin has succeeded admirably in writing a balanced military history of the revolution, making an important contribution to the extensive body of work on the struggle that eventually led to Texas' becoming part of the United States." (Mike Cox Austin American-Statesman)
"I look forward to consulting this book for the rest of my career!" (David J. Weber, Robert and Nancy Dedman Professor of History, Southern Methodist University)
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Top Customer Reviews
Hardin's captivating writing style is the key to this book's success. He clearly describes events in colorful detail that provide a masterful interpretation of this key era in Texas History. His approach to the Texas Revolution has just the right mix of political, social, and military perspectives to provide a refreshing well-balanced look at the birth of Texas. It is a joy to read.
At last, the Battles of the Alamo and San Jacinto are put into their proper context with the Battles of Gonzales, Conception, San Antonio, Goliad, the Grass Fight, and the ill-fated Matamoros Expedition. Hardin expertly pieces these events and others together to form the patchwork quilt that is the Texas Revolution. The roles of unsung heroes like James Neill, Robert Williamson, and true military professionals like Mexican General Jose Urrea are finally brought to light. Hardin enables the readers to a new level of understanding about this difficult period.
Hardin's chapter on the Alamo is the most honest and detailed to date and is worth the cost of the book alone. Gary Zaboly's illustrations and Hardins narrative paint a picture that allows us to understand the detailed flow of the final assault.
Reading TEXIAN ILIAD is a MUST for all Texans and students of history. Not only is it extremely enjoyable reading, it is a well-balanced, accurately-told history. If I were a Texas history teacher, this would be my primary text.
Even though it doesn't read like a textbook.
I can't claim to have read every book written on the Alamo battle, but I have read a few. This book is the best I know of.
Stephen L. Hardin's book, meticulously researched and carefully written, successfully appeals to both an academic audience and the history reading general public. The author's deft descriptions put you in the midst of the action, whether it's with Travis at the Alamo or riding beside Houston at San Jacinto. And the art work is simply great. Gary S. Zaboly's well researched illustrations are not only a magnificent complement to the text, but rare in the quality of their historical accuracy. His rendition of a Mississippi volunteer in the Texas army, with his purloined chickens and jug of spirits, is alone well worth the price of the book. In addition, Zaboly's maps and illustrations of the battles of the Alamo and San Jacinto are among the clearest and most useful to be found anywhere.
Texian Iliad has received considerable recognition from the historical profession, including the Kate Broocks Bates Award from the Texas State Historical Association, the Summerfield G. Roberts Award, the T. R. Fehrenbach Award, and the American Association for State and Local History's Certificate of Merit. Professor Hardin's credentials as a historian and writer include membership in the prestigious, invitation-only Texas Institute of Letters as well as numerous other professional organizations.
In short, if you want a good historical read, you'll have a hard time finding one better than Texian Iliad.
Of particular note is how dysfunctional the Texian militia was. Hardin concisely depicts the seemingly endless power struggle and how many of the volunteers followed their own leader and ignored "high command", such as it was. Most people are fairly familiar of the power struggle between Travis and Bowie, but those two merely scratched the surface of squabbles among the Texian forces. Hardin also does a much better job than most historians at portraying the valuable contributions of the tejanos, led by Juan Seguin.
The book is also laden with wonderful illustrations, maps, photographs and portraits. It concludes with forty pages of author's notes and perhaps the most comprehensive bibliography available on Texas' struggle for independence. If your goal is the best accounting of the Alamo, there may well be superior sources, but for an overall narrative of the entire history of the Texas Revolution, this book is at the top of the list.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I THINK THIS IS MY GO TO BOOK FOR LOOKING UP ANYTHING ABOUT TEXAS HISTORY. WELL WORTH HAVING ON MY SHELF. IT SEEMS FACTUAL AND COMPLETE.Published 2 months ago by Eleanor Takahashi iNSKIP
A great book delivered in the best condition as advertised. An excellent transaction.Fantastic condition.Published 2 months ago by nickel
There are few book that talk about this war. I knew nothing beyond San Jacinto and the Alamo.. Became interested during a vacation in Texas. Read morePublished 3 months ago by thomas thompson
I was very surprised just how much I learned reading this book. The use of illustrations was brilliant to my thinking. Very enjoyable read too. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Amazon Customer
I found it hard to get engaged with this telling of the story. I'll keep trying.Published 6 months ago by Blane
This is an interesting account but to me it falls short of being a military history. There isn't enough of a discussion of the strategies of both sides, how those strategies... Read morePublished 8 months ago by T. Nolle
Very well written, well researched and shows a fair version from both perspectives. Not quite the story they teach in school!Published 8 months ago by Steve Flanagan