Band Of Brothers

Version: Abridged
Author: Stephen E. Ambrose
Narrator: Cotter Smith
Genres: History, Military
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio
Published In: July 2001
# of Units: 5 CDs
Length: 5 hours
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Stephen E. Ambrose’s classic New York Times bestseller and inspiration for the acclaimed HBO series about Easy Company, the ordinary men who became the World War II’s most extraordinary soldiers at the frontlines of the war's most critical moments. Featuring a foreword from Tom Hanks.

They came together, citizen soldiers, in the summer of 1942, drawn to Airborne by the $50 monthly bonus and a desire to be better than the other guy. And at its peak—in Holland and the Ardennes—Easy Company was as good a rifle company as any in the world.

From the rigorous training in Georgia in 1942 to the disbanding in 1945, Stephen E. Ambrose tells the story of this remarkable company. In combat, the reward for a job well done is the next tough assignment, and as they advanced through Europe, the men of Easy kept getting the tough assignments.

They parachuted into France early D-Day morning and knocked out a battery of four 105 mm cannon looking down Utah Beach; they parachuted into Holland during the Arnhem campaign; they were the Battered Bastards of the Bastion of Bastogne, brought in to hold the line, although surrounded, in the Battle of the Bulge; and then they spearheaded the counteroffensive. Finally, they captured Hitler's Bavarian outpost, his Eagle's Nest at Berchtesgaden.

They were rough-and-ready guys, battered by the Depression, mistrustful and suspicious. They drank too much French wine, looted too many German cameras and watches, and fought too often with other GIs. But in training and combat they learned selflessness and found the closest brotherhood they ever knew. They discovered that in war, men who loved life would give their lives for them.

This is the story of the men who fought, of the martinet they hated who trained them well, and of the captain they loved who led them. E Company was a company of men who went hungry, froze, and died for each other, a company that took 150 percent casualties, a company where the Purple Heart was not a medal—it was a badge of office.

Reviews (14)


Written by Roger A. on September 10th, 2018

  • Book Rating: 5/5

Excellent book, added so much extra to the tv series which in it self was brilliant

Written by Paul C on December 5th, 2017

  • Book Rating: 5/5

Great site!

Written by Mark hughes on March 6th, 2016

  • Book Rating: 5/5

Great book. I could listen to it again. Highly recommend!

Written by Tim Bolduc on August 15th, 2014

  • Book Rating: 5/5

Great book! The unabridged is the best version. Dick Winters book is great too!

Band of Brothers

Written by Connie on September 15th, 2012

  • Book Rating: 4/5

I really dislike 'abridged' books, they always seems choppy to me, and I feel like I've missed something. To hear more about the development of characters of this Band of Brothers, would have been a good thing. However the book was a good reminder of what our men endured during this war.

Band of Brothers (abridged)

Written by Bruce Curson from Slidell, LA on September 17th, 2009

  • Book Rating: 3/5

I hate abridged versions but this was all that was available ... and after listedning, my opinion on abridged work still remains solidly intact. There is no doubt that the story and characters would have been much more developed for the listener if the whole book wasn't crammed into 5 CD's. In this "abridged review", I admit that I got the jist of the story and am sure this version did not give the Mr. Ambrose's full work its due justice.


Written by Anthony on August 2nd, 2007

  • Book Rating: 4/5

Fascinating and riveting. A terrific story, well researched and well read. I foolishly listened to the abridged version, and it seemed too short. Highly recommended, but savor the unabridged version.

Band of Brothers

Written by Anonymous on June 18th, 2007

  • Book Rating: 5/5

Highly recommended! Well written and researched this book tells a story everone who didn't live through World War Two should read.Mr. Ambrose effectively and movingly tells the stories of true American hereoes.

Band of Brothers

Written by Janice Church on January 26th, 2007

  • Book Rating: 5/5

Dramatic - difficult to stop listening. Vivid descriptions of being in the front lines of WWII in France, Holland, Germany. Interesting how France and US competed to get to Hitler's Eagle's Nest in Berechtesgaden first so they could plunder first. Some things never change. Glad that Easy Company at least got some of Hitler's silverware -- small reward for so much death and suffering. I highly recommend if you want to experience firsthand like it really was for Easy Company.

Pretty Good

Written by Anonymous from Yuma, AZ on October 12th, 2006

  • Book Rating: 3/5

Maybe it's because it was abridged, maybe it's because I am a girl... but I was disappointed in this book - and I never even saw the mini-series. They were a "Band of Brothers," but the author spent most of the time describing the battles and not developing the relationships between the soldiers that made one feel they were actually brothers. I am in the Navy, so could appreciate the horrors of war I will never have to face; but there are plenty of books that describe war. I was hoping for more character development.

Author Details

Author Details

Ambrose, Stephen E.

"Dr. Stephen Ambrose was a renowned historian, biographer, and acclaimed author of more than 30 books. Among his New York Times best-sellers were: NOTHING LIKE IT IN THE WORLD, CITIZEN SOLDIERS, BAND OF BROTHERS, D-DAY - JUNE 6, 1944, UNDAUNTED COURAGE, and WILD BLUE. TO AMERICA: Personal Reflections of an Historian is his latest book; and coming out in the winter 2002 is MERIWETHER LEWIS, THOMAS JEFFERSON, AND THE OPENING OF THE AMERICAN WEST: The Climactic Battle of World War II.

He was not only a great author, but also a captivating speaker, with the unique ability to provide insight into the future by employing his profound knowledge of the past. His stories demonstrated how leaders use trust, friendship and shared experiences to work together and thrive during conflict and change. His philosophy about audience engagement was best put in his own words:

As I sit at my computer, or stand at the podium, I think of myself as sitting around the campfire after a day on the trail, telling stories that I hope will have the members of the audience, or the readers, leaning forward just a bit, wanting to know what happens next.

Dr. Ambrose was a retired Boyd Professor of History at the University of New Orleans. He was the Director Emeritus of the Eisenhower Center in New Orleans, and the founder of the National D-day Museum. He was also a contributing editor for the Quarterly Journal of Military History, a member of the board of directors for American Rivers, and a member of the Lewis and Clark Bicentennial Council Board.

His talents did not go unnoticed by the film industry. Dr. Ambrose was the historical consultant for Steven Spielberg's movie Saving Private Ryan. Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks also purchased the film rights to his books CITIZEN SOLDIERS and BAND OF BROTHERS, which resulted in a 13-hour HBO mini-series in 2001.

Ambrose also participated in numerous national television programs, including ones for the History Channel and National Geographic."