This is a very-well written book with some fascinating commentary on life and war during a turbulent time in our country's history. However, the vast majority of this book is an extremely detailed account of each and every battles in which Grant either fought or was otherwise associated. Grant goes to great length to describe the geography and layout of the battle (often including maps) and presents his thoughts on the risks and advantages of each scenario. Grant also recounts exactly how many soldiers he sent in each direction and why (as well the names of all commanding and other senior officers involved ) and the results of the battle down to the number of casualties for both sides. If you're a fan of military history, then this is a must read. For somebody with a more casual interest, however, there is just too much detail about battles to wade through to get to the other material. The non-battle related material is so good though as to almost make everything worth it. Few other people were so well placed as to deliver first-hand accounts and opinions on Lincoln, Sherman, Lee, Meade and many other notable people.