• The Blood of Heroes

  • The 13-Day Struggle for the Alamo - and the Sacrifice That Forged a Nation
  • By: James Donovan
  • Narrated by: James Donovan
  • Length: 12 hrs and 8 mins
  • 4.6 out of 5 stars (237 ratings)

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The Blood of Heroes

By: James Donovan
Narrated by: James Donovan
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Publisher's Summary

The Blood of Heroes is the gripping and definitive chronicle of the iconic battle that inspired a nation - a sweeping saga of 200 brave Americans who stood tall against an overwhelmingly superior Mexican force.

On February 23, 1836, a Mexican army thousands of soldiers strong attacked a group of roughly 200 Americans holed up in an abandoned mission just east of San Antonio, Texas. For nearly two weeks, the massive force lay siege to the makeshift fort, spraying its occupants with unremitting waves of musket and cannon fire. Then, on March 6th, at 5:30 A.M., the Mexican troops unleashed a final devastating assault: divided into four columns, they rushed into the Alamo and commenced a deadly hand-to-hand fight. The Americans, despite being hugely outnumbered, fought valiantly - for themselves and for a division of an independent Texas. In the end, they were all slaughtered.

Drawing upon newly available primary sources, The Blood of Heroes is the definitive account of this epic battle. Populated by larger-than-life characters - including Davy Crockett, James Bowie, and William Barret Travis - it is a dynamic story of courage, sacrifice, and redemption.

©2012 James Donovan (P)2012 Hachette
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: History

What listeners say about The Blood of Heroes

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Blood and History Runs Off Every Page

I am a Texan and carry all of that tradition which my birthright entails. I also thought that T. R. Fehrenbach’s Texas History (Lone Star: A History of Texas and the Texans) was the best book I had read on the state’s history (or the history of The Republic more accurately). Those things remain true, but James Donovan’s The Blood of Heroes: The 13-Day Struggle for the Alamo – and the Sacrifice that Forged a Nation is a great addition to the literature. On February 23, 1836 Santa Anna laid siege to the Alamo. Davy Crockett, James Bowie, and William Barret Travis made their stand with about 175 others. This book first reminded me of the stories supporting Wilder’s Bridge of San Luis Rey. Donovan presents the lives of Crockett, Bowie, and Travis along with the forces that brought them to the Alamo and their fates. Then he details the battle. The Mexican perspective takes some prominence here since everyone contained in the Alamo ultimately died during the battle of the Alamo. Certain questions remaining from those fateful days are entertained by Donovan. Did Travis draw a line in the dust? Did Crocket really go down fighting? Was there, indeed, one member of the Alamo’s residents who escaped? Donovan presents the evidence as it is currently available. Fehrenbach is still my favorite historian, but Donovan also makes me appreciate the historian’s task and talent. After reading this volume you will want to visit Bastrop and Nacogdoches for sure. If you are a Texan, don’t miss this book. If you aren’t a Texan you might understand us a little better if you read it. The author reads his own work and does a great job.

5 people found this helpful

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You are put back in time

I thought this was going to be another book with nothing new about the Alamo, boy was I wrong!
This book is written as if you are with the Texans inside the Alamo listening to Travis, Crockett and Bowie along with the other defenders. Next your inside the Mexican ranks, trying to survive the march to Bexar. Your suddenly put inside Santa Ana’s room, planning for the attack. You can visualize the battle, feel the emotion. You experience the battles for Bexar, Alamo, Goliad and San Jacinto and the aftermaths! I don’t need anymore books on the Alamo, this book should be on the top of your Alamo library!

2 people found this helpful

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A Must Read

I can't recommend this book enough. It's a meticulously researched and fair history of the Texas revolution and the people who fought on both sides. From the common-man liberty-loving colonists and Tejano volunteers who answered the call of revolution and the Mexican conscripts and prisoners forced to march hundreds of miles to Legendary leaders, Houston, Travis, Crockett, Bowie, Pena and the tyrannical despot Santa Anna, James Donavan brings history to life. Despite the title the book covers more the war from the revolution inciting incidents to final battle at San Jacinto and everything in between, this book presents true story as experienced from both sides of the war.

1 person found this helpful

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Remember...

I wasn't born in Texas, so I never knew much about the Alamo or any of the Texas heroes. After reading Donovan's outstanding book, that is no longer the case.

First of all, this book shockingly well researched, from both the Texas and Mexican sides. Second, Donovan writes this like a novel, which adds more character and excitement than one typically finds in a history book. Also, I'm a big fan of authors reading their own works, especially when they are this good. Very highly recommended!

1 person found this helpful

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good account

good account but improper pronunciation of Cavalry. Calvary was where Jesus was crucified.

1 person found this helpful

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Narrator Problems

Would you be willing to try another one of James Donovan’s performances?

Mr. Donovan must not be a native Texan. Otherwise he would know that James Bonham's name is pronounced BONham not BONEham. Also he mispronounces Deaf Smith's name. It is pronounced "deaf" as in "unable to hear." Finally, he misstates a date by referring to an event on March 25 which clearly takes place before the fall of the Alamo on March 6.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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The Alamo as it really occurred

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes. A well written, engrossing account of the fall of the Alamo. Well researched and reads like a thriller, even though we know the outcome in advance.

What did you like best about this story?

The clear, lucid description of the final assault

Have you listened to any of James Donovan’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

Nono

Any additional comments?

Donovan gives fascinating details and insight into the lives of the main characters involved,

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

A good Alamo history

I am a huge fan of most military history. I am not from Texas, and the only Texas revolution and Alamo history I knew were from a brief bit in high school history. This book gives a lead up history to the battle, and tells a bit about the personal history of some of the more famous participants. The book also tells what happened after the siege of the Alamo and how the revolution all worked out.
The authors writing is pretty good and fairly easy to get through, however he does repeat himself in at least 3 or 4 separate instances. I think the book could have went through a little more editing.
All in all, Blood of Heroes is a good Alamo history, and a fairly entertaining read.

David Crockett is a truly fascinating character, I wish we had politicians like him today.

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

A good Alamo history

I am a huge fan of most military history. I am not from Texas, and the only Texas revolution and Alamo history I knew were from a brief bit in high school history. This book gives a lead up history to the battle, and tells a bit about the personal history of some of the more famous participants. The book also tells what happened after the siege of the Alamo and how the revolution all worked out.
The authors writing is pretty good and fairly easy to get through, however he does repeat himself in at least 3 or 4 separate instances. I think the book could have went through a little more editing.
All in all, Blood of Heroes is a good Alamo history, and a fairly entertaining read.

David Crockett is a truly fascinating character, I wish we had politicians like him today.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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My home and my heart.

I have lived my entire life in and around Texas. For this I believed I understood the story very well. I now as a Army officer and older listener believe I can feel and understand all the parts that for years just did not add up. I could not ask for a better telling of the history I base most of my Texas based bravado on.
For any seeker of an emotional link to a hero story or a general love of Texas this should be a first stop.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • IYER
  • 12-24-12

Detailed

Picking up just one episode in American history and building a whole narrative around it would not be an easy task, but the author manages to do it in an interesting manner, by painting wonderful word pictures of the backgrounds of the various protagonists in this history. Even someone (like me) with a limited knowledge of American history found the book both educative and entertaining.

James Donovan has narrated the book himself, and as is often the case when the author and narrator are the same, this adds to the pleasure of listening to the audiobook.

3 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Paul
  • 10-23-20

Monotony

Struggle to finish this boring account and listen to the authors monotone voice. Awful book