Customer Reviews for

Undaunted Courage: Meriwether Lewis, Thomas Jefferson and the Opening of the American West

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Sort by: Showing 21 – 40 of 82 Customer Reviews
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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 14, 2008

    An excellent history

    Undaunted Courage is an excellent history of the travels of the Lewis and Clark party. Beginning with the debates in Washington regarding the merits of such an expedition, followed by the supply chain trials and tribulations that Lewis faced pre-expedition, the book delves into the minutiae that such an expedition faced. As such, it tends to drag at the beginning. However, as the reader fights through the first few chapters, a sense of anticipation begins to develop. At times the reader may feel some of the same anticipation that Lewis and Clark felt in the months leading up to their voyage. From the embarkation point on, the reader is told the history of the voyage literally through the words of Lewis and Clark themselves. A wonderful read and it should be REQUIRED learning for anyone living in the northern United States West of the Mississippi. The book gives a great description of America before the first settlers.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 21, 2007

    A REAL page turner.

    This non fiction book was great to read. It opened my eyes to the trials and tribulations of Lewis. It was really hard to get into, but once I did, it was great. I would have liked more information on Clark, but that is okay. It was good to hear things about Jefferson, too. You could tell that Ambrose had real passion for this subject. Sometimes he would wander and ramble, but other than that it was good. If you are interested in history, I highly recommend this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 10, 2007

    Merry weather, Lewis

    This book was a fantastic look on the story of the Lewis and Clark expedition. The author's words in the book were greatly involved, and the book also provided excellent background on the life of Captain Lewis, as well as Clark and Thomas Jefferson, to name a few. Although the book is quite a bit slow in the beginning, even somewhat boring in my opinion, the book is overall worth to read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2006

    I'm sorry, but I do NOT like this book at all!

    This book did not hold my atttention very well. Mr. Ambrose would start to ramble about things while writing. He would go on for pages about something that did not concern much- such as how the corps loved to eat dog, and the Indians had dogs, so one guy bought a little dog and ate it and this other guy bought a big dog and ate it, and then they both decided to get dog the next day too, and then they wanted to get some the next day, so they did and they ate it, and then these other indians had some dogs too, and so they decided to go get that dog too so that they could each eat ten dogs! Much like that. However, people who seem to like books that are very factual would probably love this book. I also congratulate this author on picking a remarkable story, although I don't much have interest in it anymore because of Undaunted Courage.

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 5, 2006

    Great Historical Book

    This book tells the story mainly that of Meriwether Lewis, his boyhood, teenage years, all the way up to President Jefferson asking him to seach the Louisana Purchase. The author does a wonderful job translating and understanding the notes from Lewis's journey with William Clark into an intersting story of survival from Native Americans, Rivers, Disease, and natural disasters. It ends with talking about Lewis's demise upon return to St. Louis. Great Read for anyone enjoying history

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 28, 2006

    Entranced by the passion and the mission

    I wasn't sure what to expect as I'm only a budding history buff. However, once I picked up the book, I couldn't put it down. What made this book great was that it was mostly fact and not opinion. American history is such a great subject and it's a shame more people aren't interested in it. If someone is looking for an inspiring look into our history, they should start with this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 10, 2005

    Good biography, but tears poor Meriwether to shreds in the end

    Ambrose wrote a pretty good biography on Lewis. But, in the last chapter, he doesn't mention the BIG possibility that Lewis was murdered. They claim that Lewis shot himself with his pistols, but Lewis's Cheney and Cheney pistols were 65 calibers. If he had shot himself in the gead and chest with guns that powerful, he wouldn't have lived for 3 hours, he would have died instantly. Also, Ambrose makes Lewis look like a fool. And he claims that Lewis was an alcoholic, when there's no evidence of that.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 22, 2004

    We Have Lost a Great American

    Stephen E. Ambrose will probably go down as one of the greatest American historical writers. His books are well-reseached and compelling. This is a good book for anyone who wonders about the great west before Manifest Destiny.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 11, 2004

    Indepth,informative and eye opening

    As a teacher of High School History. This is a well written book the as excellent fuliity for the average reader This topic is mentioned but rarely entered indepth. It gives the reader an excellent opertunity to understand the effect of the Lousianna Purchase, The scope and breath of the misson of The Corp of Discovery. The role and work of Lewis and Clark and the contribution they and the members of their party made in making America the great naton that it is today. It also gives the reader and student of history an understanding of our early relations with the Native Americans.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 2, 2004

    Great!!!!!!

    This book is well written and for someone who is not a historian. The book is a great overview and very descript. For someone that is looking for a great true story and is seeking a somewhat true account of what happened during their journey, this is a superb read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 12, 2003

    It's a Shame

    In an otherwise finely readable account of the great Lewis and Clark Expedition and related matters, Stephen Ambrose shamefully attacks Meriwether Lewis's character, calling him a manic-depressive and a drug addict. Ambrose wrote the whole book with these notions in mind, thus sprinkling it with misleading melancholy and tainting it with one-sided opinions. You don't get the other side at all. Real students/historians of the Lewis & Clark journals and related materials who I know get a bit angry about all this. The other side is documented in an online book at www.meriwetherandme.com which presents quite a story (nonfiction) about the so-far thwarted attempt to exhume Lewis, and it offers a chart of the dates of Lewis's writings to rebut one of Ambrose's major claims. (It also includes a love story with blatant sex that'll probably shock a lot of people.) It's a shame Ambrose withheld (or rejected) a lot of the weighty evidence about Lewis's character and mysterious death. For me, his decision to do so casts doubt on the veracity of his other works. The interested reader's only other 'complete' option is to get the great set of the journals relatively recently published by the Univ. of Nebraska Press, edited by Gary Moulton, which cost about $600. Other very good books on this are the biographies of Lewis by Dillon (I forgot his first name) and Vardis Fisher. Fisher's book 'Suicide or Murder?' does a great job on the mysterious death.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 18, 2003

    best book

    total fav if you ask me this book rocks it is so detailed everybody should read it

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 28, 2003

    Clear, accurately written documentary

    As with most of the late Mr. Ambrose's work, this book brings the history to the reader as a mental movie. From the expedition's financial and political support in Washington down to the explorers sleeping habits. Mr. Ambrose interest in the cause was quite evident. Good reading!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 17, 2002

    The Best Historical Nonfiction Novelist

    "Undaunted Courage" takes you on a wonderful journey through an important piece of American history. Mr. Ambrose was the first and best historical nonfiction novelist. In "Undaunted Courage" he continued his signature methodology, taking researched historical facts and applying a carefully measured amount of hyperbole and sensationalism to successfully grab the reader's attention by "wowing" them. His was a great creative approach that turned history into adventure. Stephen Ambrose was a good and interesting teacher who opened the doorways to further knowledge. Though there are now a few others who have a unique and interesting approach to history, as Stephen Ambrose had, he led the way and was the best. "Undaunted Courage" is proof of that.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 12, 2002

    Wonderfully Written

    This is a must read for history buffs of all kind. If you are a Lewis and Clark fan like I am you won't be able to put this book down. Outstanding!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 20, 2001

    A Must for Every Collection!

    Modern day 'Adventure Travellers' will be humbled by the all the excitement and encounters that Ambrose so aptly describes. An excellent introduction into the most significant exploration of Modern Man. Why didn't our history teachers tell us these stories? A must/great gift for any adventurer, lover of American history on your list.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 10, 2001

    Wonderful story

    This book helps me a lot to broaden my knowledge about early activities of pioneers in the 19th century. I could not put down this book until I finish it to end. It is a great epic about all members of expeditionary team. I love author's fine touches on every details.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 10, 2001

    'Undaunted' Lacking in Research

    As a historical reenactor and researcher of the L&C Expedition, I was quite disappointed in the poor research. For example, Ambrose (or his ghost writer) doesn't know the difference between a 'loaded' and 'primed' rifle. He calls a musket a 'musket loader'. He writes of Capt. Lewis wearing a 'leather tricorn hat' and of portable soup being an experimental bullion 'with various beans and vegetables' (it was a hardened bullion glue). I could list many more, but you get the point. Not very impressive for someone who has studied the Corps of Discovery for over 20 years! Although an informative read for those new to the L&C experience, you're better off reading abridged editions of the journals to get a real feel for life during those times.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 22, 2001

    pulls you in and doesnt let go!

    Great book focused on the exiting and adventure filled Lewis and clark voyage. it may start slow but dont give up on it, it is great.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 30, 2000

    i didn't care for its crapulence

    although i agreed with many of the themes of the book, i did not care for the crapulence with which the author told his tale

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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Sort by: Showing 21 – 40 of 82 Customer Reviews
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