Download War Letters: Extraordinary Correspondence from American Wars Audiobook

War Letters: Extraordinary Correspondence from American Wars Audiobook, by Andrew Carroll Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Andrew Carroll Narrator: Joan Allen, Tom Brokaw Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: May 2001 ISBN: 9780743561365
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (400 ratings) (rate this audio book)
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In 1998, Andrew Carroll founded the Legacy Project with the goal of remembering Americans who have served this nation and preserving their letters for posterity. Since then, more than 50,000 war letters discovered in basements, attics, scrapbooks, and old trunks have poured in from around the country. The best of these letters are assembled in this extraordinary collection, offering unprecedented insight into the Civil War, World Wars I and II, Vietnam, Korea, the Cold War, the Persian Gulf, and even the fighting in Somalia and the Balkans.

Featured here are dramatic accounts of combat written immediately after the most ferocious battles American troops have ever faced; poignant expressions of love by homesick husbands and sweethearts; humorous anecdotes and gripes about insufferable conditions; thoughtful reflections on the nature of warfare; and perhaps most devastating, a startling number of last letters, heartfelt messages penned just hours before the sender was killed.

These historic letters capture the full fury and intensity of warfare, and they reveal in vivid detail what the servicemen and women of this nation have experienced and sacrificed on the front lines. War Letters is a lasting tribute to those who have fought for this country, and celebrates the enduring power and lyricism of personal letters.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Quite simply, this is one of the greatest, most riveting books of war letters I have ever read.” 

    Stephen E. Ambrose

  • “These war letters are more deeply moving, more revelatory, and more powerful than any dispatch from the front. It's the truly felt history of what war is all about.” 

    Studs Terkel

  • “A priceless treasure.” 

    Tom Brokaw

  • “The power of these voices from various fronts—including an Asian woman held in an American internment camp—is undeniable, and the sentiments and observations they record have a compelling immediacy.” 

    Publishers Weekly

  • New York Times Bestseller

Listener Reviews

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  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ethan | 2/20/2014

    " This book is a collection of letters from American wars since the Civil War. The letters are great snapshots in time, bringing their histories alive. But what surprised me was the quality of the editor's (/author's) comments and narrations between each letter that strings them all into a very concise and well told history of American warfare from the soldiers' point of view. Great book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Abby | 2/14/2014

    " This is a collection of war letters from the Civil War, WWI, WWII, Korea, Cold War, Vietnam, Persian Gulf, Somalia, and Bosnia. The author adds a few notes to the ends of the letters to give historical context and updates about the letter writer. Very emotional. Does not need to be read in order. I enjoyed skipping around. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Paul | 2/11/2014

    " just a bit of what soldiers and their families went through during wars. Good read "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Eddy | 2/4/2014

    " In 1998, Andrew Carroll founded the Legacy Project, with the goal of remembering Americans who have served their nation and preserving their letters for posterity. Since then, over 50,000 letters have poured in from around the country. Nearly two hundred of them comprise this amazing collection -- including never-before-published letters that appear in the new afterword. Here are letters from the Civil War, World War I, World War II, Korea, the Cold War, Vietnam, the Persian Gulf war, Somalia, and Bosnia -- dramatic eyewitness accounts from the front lines, poignant expressions of love for family and country, insightful reflections on the nature of warfare. Amid the voices of common soldiers, marines, airmen, sailors, nurses, journalists, spies, and chaplains are letters by such legendary figures as Gen. William T. Sherman, Clara Barton, Theodore Roosevelt, Ernie Pyle, Gen. Douglas MacArthur, Julia Child, Gen. Norman Schwarzkopf, and Gen. Benjamin O. Davis Sr. Collected in "War Letters, " they are an astonishing historical record, a powerful tribute to those who fought, and a celebration of the enduring power of letters., "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Catherine | 2/3/2014

    " These very personal letters & stories always get to me. Listened to the audiobook with letters read by Tom Brokaw, David Strathairn, Joan Allen & many more recognizable voices. Good stuff. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jackie | 2/1/2014

    " One of my absolute favorite books. The combination of actual letters written during wartime (by both unknown and well known people) and the historical context of each series of letters (explaining a battle the letter writer refers to, for example) is quite compelling. Further, many letters conclude with a 'postscript', if you will, of what happened to the letter writer. Did he make it home? I love that all proceeds go toward veteran groups. And I love that the sentiments of war are the same from one era to the next. This is both instructive and moving. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jill | 1/18/2014

    " This book is amazing. I read it a couple of years ago and now I am ready to read it again. Laura, I think you and Will would really enjoy it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Michael | 1/18/2014

    " Excellent human stories behind the soldiers who fought in wars and lived through them. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Bryan | 1/17/2014

    " Just an awesome book. Rather eerie reading these personal letters knowing that many times that these were sometimes the last letter they wrote. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jenny | 1/15/2014

    " A moving reminder of the very personal impact of war "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Oswald | 1/4/2014

    " informative & depressing "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kelly | 12/11/2013

    " Good interesting non-fiction work....compilation of letters collected from soldiers during various wars. Definitely not a pick-me-up but really makes you appreciate what folks have done to protect our freedom. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Heather | 12/2/2013

    " I really liked this book because of the various types of correspondence included in it. It allows the reader to get a different perspective of war. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jamie | 5/28/2013

    " An emotional read but worth every tear and heartbreak. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ashley | 5/25/2012

    " real letters sent from soldiers through all of the US conflicts. Starting during the Revolutionary War all the way up until present times. A longer book but a must read for students interested in our country's conflicts. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Cami | 4/5/2010

    " This book should be required reading for all American high school students. This book is about much more than war. It is reading history through the letters of individual Americans. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Dawn | 1/9/2010

    " absolute must read! real letters from real soldiers! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Claudine | 11/29/2009

    " Because I am an "Army Brat" I loved this book. The letters are touching, inspiring, interesting. The broad range of letters over the extended period of time brought better understanding of what the military did and does to preserve our freedom, at great personal cost. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Mark | 11/8/2009

    " Real letters, real experiences. Gives u a great mental picture of what they are going through. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Catherine | 10/17/2009

    " These very personal letters & stories always get to me. Listened to the audiobook with letters read by Tom Brokaw, David Strathairn, Joan Allen & many more recognizable voices. Good stuff. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Elise | 10/11/2009

    " My favorite quote from this book: "I wanna marry you...to spend the rest of my life with you telling me not to bite my fingernails." from a letter written by Sid Diamond, WWII "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ed | 9/14/2008

    " Sad. Touching. At times I felt drawn into such intimate conversations that I felt a part of the correspondence. Well worth the read. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Bonnie | 8/18/2008

    " Intimate letters home to loved ones from soldiers at war. I found it to be very interesting. Sometimes sad, sometimes humorous, and always poignant. Loved this book!
    "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Cami | 6/30/2008

    " This book should be required reading for all American high school students. This book is about much more than war. It is reading history through the letters of individual Americans. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ashley | 6/15/2008

    " real letters sent from soldiers through all of the US conflicts. Starting during the Revolutionary War all the way up until present times. A longer book but a must read for students interested in our country's conflicts. "

About the Author

Andrew Carroll’s books, War Letters and Letters of a Nation, were New York Times bestsellers. In 1998, he founded the Legacy Project, a national, all-volunteer effort to honor and remember our nation’s veterans by seeking out and saving their letters. He is editing this book on a pro bono basis. Carroll lives in Washington, DC.

About the Narrators

Joan Allen has worked in theater, television, and film during her early career and achieved recognition for her Broadway debut in Burn This, winning a Tony Award. She has received three Academy Award nominations, including two for Best Supporting Actress for Nixon and The Crucible and one for Best Actress for The Contender. Her other films include The Ice Storm, Face/Off, Pleasantville, The Notebook, and The Bourne Ultimatum.

Tom Brokaw is the author of several bestsellers, including The Greatest Generation, The Greatest Generation Speaks, An Album of Memories, A Long Way from Home, and Boom! A native of South Dakota, he graduated from the University of South Dakota with a degree in political science. He joined NBC News in 1966, serving as the White House correspondent during Watergate and anchoring Today on NBC from 1976 to 1981. He was the sole anchor and managing editor of NBC Nightly News with Tom Brokaw from 1983 to 2005. He continues to report for NBC News, producing award-winning long-form documentaries and providing expertise during breaking news events. Brokaw has won every major award in broadcast journalism, including two DuPonts, a Peabody, and several Emmys. He is a regular contributor to the op-ed pages of the New York Times, Washington Post, and Wall Street Journal, as well as writing for Time, Newsweek, and Men’s Journal. He lives in New York and Montana.