The Blood of Heroes: The 13-Day Struggle for the Alamo – and the Sacrifice that Forged a Nation
Donovan, who wrote A Terrible Glory, called the “definitive” history of Custer and the battle of Little Big Horn, has now done the same for the Battle of the Alamo, the February-to-March 1836 battle between Anglo rebels (including Davy Crockett) and the Mexican army. Alamo aficionados who have read other books on the Alamo’s complicated history have praised this book for its balanced insight. For me, an Alamo neophyte, there was a steep learning curve. The book offers exhaustive detail about the battle, using reams of new evidence about such iconic moments (for Texans, at least) as to whether or not William Travis drew a line in the sand just before the final doomed battle, asking those willing to die for Texas to step over the line and stand with him.
Travis, Crockett, and about 200 others died defending the Alamo. Their deaths so galvanized others that the rebels decisively defeated the Mexican Army a month and a half later.
Donovan has a gift for organizing his material in such a way that it comes to life coherently. I’d recommend The Blood of Heroes to those with an interest in the period or anyone who loves Texas or military history.