Military Review English Edition March-April 2016 - Page 131

BOOK REVIEWS planning, the United States may opt out of war beforehand after recognizing the prohibitive costs relative to risks in achieving desired outcomes. Through fascinating insight, the author has done a superb job supporting his theoretical argument. The exhaustive scholarship, relevant detail, and personality nuances of political and military figures provided in each case study are beyond compare. The well-crafted book is easy to read and understand. It is a must-read for political science, international security or international affairs professionals and scholars, those involved in state building, government policy makers, and senior military professionals. Anyone else interested in learning about the importance of integrated and comprehensive near- and long-term war planning in achieving strategic objectives through military means will also find this book an enlightening read. Lt. Col. David A. Anderson, PhD, U.S. Marine Corps, Retired, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas CRUCIBLE OF COMMAND: Ulysses S. Grant and Robert E. Lee— The War They Fought, the Peace They Forged William C. Davis, Da Capo Press, Boston, 2015, 686 pages H istorian William C. Davis has written an excellent dual biography of two men who shaped the American Civil War. At first glance, it may seem that the two could not be more different. Ulysses S. Grant was the Northern son of a tanner while Robert E. Lee was the Southern son of a ne’er-do-well Revolutionary War officer. Yet, the author succeeds in underlining key similarities. He portrays them as real men of their times while still explaining the origins of their traditional iconic images. This is a valuable book for those who have already studied tactical and operational levels of command yet need to become students of strategic thinking. These MILITARY REVIEW  March-April 2016 persons necessarily need to under