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Hannibal's Last Battle: Zama and the Fall of Carthage Hardcover – 18 Oct 2007


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Pen & Sword Military; 1st Edition edition (18 Oct 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1844156354
  • ISBN-13: 978-1844156351
  • Product Dimensions: 16.6 x 2.3 x 24.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 561,673 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

A brilliant account of the final campaign of Hannibal, the great Carthaginian commander who came nearer than any to overthrowing Rome. The author contrasts Hannibal s Generalship with that of his adversary Scipio Africanus, and shows how Roman patience and ruthlessness overcame Hannibal s military genius. --Chris Buckland

Review

"The book is crisply written, well researched, and thoroughly documented. While the narrative is sparse, the information contained is densely packed.  Carey makes use of two talented cartographers, Joshua Allfree and John Cairns, who also share the book's byline, and for good reason.  The superlative maps and tactical diagrams are what make this book stand out from every other volume on ancient battles....  In black and white, they are of tremendous value in explicating the tactical genius of both Scipio and Hannibal, the strategic implications of the Punic Wars, and the details of the battle of Zama itself.  Carey's book is a superb piece of scholarship about one of the most dramatic and decisive battles in the ancient world."

-Jim Tucci, Associate Professor of National Security Studies, Air University Journal of Military History

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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Simon G. Rice on 11 Jan 2008
Format: Hardcover
Carey presents a well-researched and very readable account of the epic military struggle between ancient Rome and Carthage known to history as the Punic Wars. The author breathes life into the ancient historical accounts of Polybius and Livy and supplements his concise narrative with great tactical maps, setting it a part from British Field Marshal Bagnall's book. As the title suggests, the strength of this book is the reconstruction of the Battle of Zama in 202, complete with an eleven map reconstruction of this important engagement. Although lean on political history, this book is a fine introduction to how the Romans and Carthaginians waged Europe's first "Great War".
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Arch Stanton on 3 April 2011
Format: Hardcover
When I got this book I was hoping for a book on the battle of Zama. There have been several written on Cannae and I figured that this would be along a similar vein. I was wrong. Frankly, I wonder if the publishers chose the title after the fact. But I'm going to try and ignore this and review this book for what it is. First off, it's a very short book. That is not a good thing when dealing with such a large topic. Basically, the book analyzes the methods of Hannibal and Scipio and shows what type of commanders they both were. There are a number of diagrams for the battles which help in understanding them. Honestly, I don't have a problem with this book as a history of the Punic Wars, but it really needed to include more information. I'd recommend Goldworthy's The Fall of Carthage or Bagnall's The Punic Wars. Both go into more depth and are more enjoyable than this. The only real plus side to this book is the diagrams.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 8 reviews
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
Interesting Book! 2 Mar 2009
By C. Howell - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I am not an historian by training, but I do find a well-written history book an enjoyable read. I chose to read this title due to the author's excellent reputation as a professor of history in Northern Colorado. Although I had no prior interest in the Punic Wars, I was pleasantly surprised by the readability and ease with which I was able to follow the events and learn the background necessary to understand the significance of the tactics used by Hannibal Barca and Scipio Africanus. The author presents a helpful Glossary of Important Personalities at the end of the book, as well as interesting details of the customs of the time period of the battles. The events of the book come to life through the descriptive narrative, which caused even a non-historian such as myself to become engaged in the text through to the very end of the book. History texts can at times be dry and pretentious. This book was a pleasant contrast and was an entertaining read while still providing a solid academic analysis of the events of the conflicts leading to the Punic Wars and the final battle at Zama. I recommend the book to students, scholars as well as those readers like me who are just curious to learn more about this time period in history.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Great starting point on the Punic Wars. 18 Oct 2009
By Nicholas Noppinger - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is an excellent survey of the Punic Wars. Carey also provides the reader with some excellent commentary on the art of warfare in the context of the Punic Wars. Fortunately, military histories sell; unfortunately, this has left the subject inundated with far too many works written by authors that do not have a solid background in military history. Brain Todd Carey is well versed in the subject of warfare and it shows in this book. The text provides the reader with a good background on the subject and the book is superbly illustrated.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
one of the greatest books I have read on the subject. 12 April 2010
By NAVY78 - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
This book was a great and enjoyable read. I particularly liked the maps, glossary and insight of tactics and strategy. I am a history major (Classical Antiquity) and I must say, this is one of the greatest books on the subject to date. I highly recommend reading this book, its great for the general reader or scholar.
6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Concise History of Hannibal's Military Career 9 Nov 2008
By Kenneth P. Galbraith - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
This slim volume is a concise history of Hannibal's military career. In the opening chapters, it recounts the history of the three punic wars to set that career in context, but after that most of the book is devoted to a fairly detailed account of Hannibal's major battles, with each one being illustrated by a series of maps that show how it unfolded. The take away lesson, though it won't do anybody much good now, is that the side with the best cavalry won. And, don't fight when your troops are cold, wet, and tired. There is some background information on Carthage itself and punic society in general, as well as their Numidian allies, which I enjoyed. I would have liked more of this, but that's not what this book is about. The focus is pretty tight on the military side of things. It includes some good diagrams that show the typical Carthaginian and Roman lines of battle and a general discussion of the tactics of that period, so that even if the reader comes to the book with little background knowledge of that conflict, they will not feel lost and will leave with a good sense of how the punic wars were fought.
7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
A Misleading Title, But a Decent Overview of the Second Punic War 26 July 2009
By Arch Stanton - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
When I got this book I was hoping for a book on the battle of Zama. There have been several written on Cannae and I figured that this would be along a similar vein. I was wrong. Frankly, I wonder if the publishers chose the title after the fact. But I'm going to try and ignore my disappointment and review this book for what it is. First off, it's a very short book. That is not a good thing when dealing with such a large topic. Basically, the book analyzes the methods of Hannibal and Scipio and shows what type of commanders they both were. There are a number of diagrams for the battles which help in understanding them. Honestly, I don't have a problem with this book as a history of the Punic Wars, but it really needed to include more information. I'd recommend Goldworthy's The Fall of Carthage or Bagnall's The Punic Wars. Both go into more depth and are more enjoyable than this. The only real plus side to this book is the diagrams.
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