Robert E. Lee was perhaps the most revered military leader to emerge from the American Civil War, generally loved on the Confederate side and respected by his Union opponents. His reputation was based on a series of victories over Union armies invading Virginia, starting with the Seven Days Battle of 1862 and peaking at Second Bull Run, Chancellorsville and Fredericksburg.
The main focus of the book is on Lee's role in the major battles in the Eastern Theatre, from the Peninsula Campaign to the final battles around Richmond and Petersburg. Gettysburg gets the most space. The less well known Cheat Mountain and coastal campaigns are also covered. The accounts of the battles are sizable enough to make sense of Lee's role in them, but the book would probably be most useful read alongside a larger book on the Civil War.
Field includes a useful section on the way Lee has been treated by historians, from the earliest biographies that helped create the genre of the 'lost cause' to more balanced modern works. The book is well illustrated, and includes the normal high quality Osprey maps.
This is a useful short biography of Lee, providing a balanced view of his successes and his failures for the general reader.
Early Military Life, 1825-61
The Hours of Destiny, 1861-65
Inside the Mind
When War is Done
A Life in Words
Author: Ron Field