• Citizen Soldiers

  • The U.S. Army from the Normandy Beaches to the Bulge to the Surrender of Germany
  • By: Stephen E. Ambrose
  • Narrated by: George Wilson
  • Length: 21 hrs and 35 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Release date: 01-24-11
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars 4.7 (599 ratings)

Regular price: $37.75

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Publisher's Summary

Citizen Soldiers opens on June 7, 1944, on the Normandy beaches, and ends on May 7, 1945. From the high command on down to the enlisted men, Stephen E. Ambrose draws on hundreds of interviews and oral histories from men on both sides who were there. He recreates the experiences of the individuals who fought the battles, the women who served, and the Germans who fought against us.
Ambrose reveals the learning process of a great army: how to cross rivers, how to fight in snow or hedgerows, how to fight in cities, how to coordinate air and ground campaigns, how to fight in winter and on the defensive, how citizens become soldiers in the best army in the world.
A masterful biography of the U.S. Army in the European Theater of Operations, Citizen Soldiers provides a compelling account of the extraordinary stories of ordinary men in their fight for democracy.
©1997 Stephen E. Ambrose (P)2011 Simon & Schuster
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Critic Reviews

" Citizen Soldiers [is] a high point in Ambrose's long fascination with the nature of leaders and followers. (John Lehman, The Wall Street Journal)
"History boldly told and elegantly written.... Gripping." (Kyle Smith, People)
"Ambrose proves once again he is a masterful historian.... Spellbinding.... The book captures the bizarre contradictions, random kindness and unexpectedly comic moments of the push to Berlin as memorably as a great war novel." (John Omicinski, Detroit Free Press)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Aimee on 05-15-13

I Read it Before and Hearing it is Even Better

Would you listen to Citizen Soldiers again? Why?

This is a great telling of WWII from the soldiers perspective. I read it some years ago and hearing it again I learned some new things I had forgotten. Stephen Ambrose has a way of telling a story that bring the words of history to life.

Who was your favorite character and why?

His story telling keeps the listener listening. It's like watching a movie in your head.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

I wish I could listen to this in one sitting.

Any additional comments?

Listening to this makes me proud to be an American. Proud of our history and thankful of our past. Some may say our current generation couldn't do the same. Many have said the same of previous generations before. Gertrude Stein called the WWII generation, "The lost generation".

I'm sure history will repeat itself if the current generation is ever called on to defend freedom on a massive scale. It will succeed and we will prevail.

What a great book.

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6 of 6 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Jeremy on 06-30-11

Required reading, excellent narration

This book conveys the tragedy of war for all. As a combat vet of Iraq I feel that my tour was a walk in the park compared to WWII. All citizens should read this book to help them understand the price that was paid to defeat the nazis.

The narrator also does an excellent job, his various accents help the flow of the book and his delivery, tempo, and tone were perfect.

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12 of 13 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Phil on 02-07-16

Excellent

Stephen E Ambrose is a figure of some envy within the community of WW2 historians. He somehow cracked the market open and his Band of Brothers became that golden HBO TV hit. I've heard some try to undermine him by discrediting his academic prowess. I have to say that doesn't disconcert me at all. He is a fine writer, his work is accessible and his perspective on human experience in combat is insightful and empathetic.

I like how Ambrose looks at soldiers as people first and foremost. The solidiers and individuals, with characteristics and as much as he can he will tease out the humanity within the uniform.

This is a great book. It gives you enough to understand the nasty side of war, without detracting one iota from the heroism. The futility is there too - this account doesn't embellish armed conflict, but it doesn't saturate the reader with morality tales either.

There is a genuine critical perspective - and Ambrose is not partisan - he respects both the axis and the allies as soldiers quite equally and pulls no punches in pointing out the strengths and weakeness on both sides.

His criticism of both Montgomery and Patton is welcome and refreshing. He is in neither tent and can see that even in WW2, the media image outstripped the abilities of both men.

Some of the tales will make you shake your head. From the small intimate stories that happened between one of two soldiers in a skirmish or a patrol, to the stories of entire battles that have since been apparently forgotten or sanitised for the sake of post-war recollection.

And by the way Ambrose doesn't mind digging out the controversy and giving you some insight in those situations either.

A genuinely excellent insight.

I also rate the narration very highly - which is incredibly important for me.

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2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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