10 Engaging Books on American History - List by Kirkus Reviews™

  10 Engaging Books on American History

Books in list (10)


Title: A Terrible Glory

In June of 1876, on a hill above a winding river called "the Little Bighorn," George Armstrong Custer and all 210 men under his direct command were annihilated by nearly 2,000 Sioux and Cheyenne. This devastating loss caused an uproar, and public figures pointed fingers in order to avoid responsibility. Custer, who was conveniently dead, took the brunt of the blame. The truth, however, was far more complex. A TERRIBLE GLORY is the first book to relate the entire story of this endlessly fascinating battle, and the first to call upon all the vital new forensic research of the past quarter century. It is also the first book to bring to light the details of the army cover-up--and unravel one of the greatest mysteries in US military history.
Author(s): James Donovan
ISBN 13: 9780316067478
Pages: 560
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Title: Fallen Founder: The Life of Aaron Burr

<p class="null1">A controversial challenge to the works of Ron Chernow and David McCullough</p> <p>With <i>Fallen Founder</i> , Nancy Isenberg plumbs rare and obscure sources to shed new light on everyone?s favorite founding villain. The Aaron Burr whom we meet through Isenberg?s eye-opening biography is a feminist, an Enlightenment figure on par with Jefferson, a patriot, and?most importantly?a man with powerful enemies in an age of vitriolic political fighting. Revealing the gritty reality of eighteenth-century America, Fallen Founder is the authoritative restoration of a figure who ran afoul of history and a much-needed antidote to the hagiography of the revolutionary era.</p>
Author(s): Nancy Isenberg
ISBN 13: 9780143113713
Pages: 560
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Title: The Man Who Saved the Union

Ulysses Grant emerges in this masterful biography as a genius in battle and a driven president to a divided country, who remained fearlessly on the side of right. He was a beloved commander in the field who made the sacrifices necessary to win the war, even in the face of criticism. He worked valiantly to protect the rights of freed men in the South. He allowed the American Indians to shape their own fate even as the realities of Manifest Destiny meant the end of their way of life. In this sweeping and majestic narrative, bestselling author H.W. Brands now reconsiders Grant's legacy and provides an intimate portrait of a heroic man who saved the Union on the battlefield and consolidated that victory as a resolute and principled political leader.
Author(s): H. W. Brands
ISBN 13: 9780385532419
Pages: 718
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Title: Runaway Slaves

A sweeping panorama of plantation life before the Civil War, this book reveals that slaves frequently rebelled against their masters and ran away from their plantations whenever they could. For generations, important aspects about slave life on the plantations of the American South have remained shrouded. Historians thought, for instance, that slaves were generally pliant and resigned to their roles as human chattel, and that racial violence on the plantation was an aberration. In this precedent setting book, John Hope Franklin and Loren Schweninger demonstrate that, contrary to popular belief, significant numbers of slaves did in fact frequently rebel against their masters and struggled to attain their freedom.
Author(s): John Hope Franklin;Loren Schweninger
ISBN 13: 9780195084511
Pages: 480
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Title: John Adams

Author(s): David McCullough
ISBN 13: 9780743223133
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Title: First Family

John and Abigail Adams left an indelible and remarkably preserved portrait of their lives together in their personal correspondence: both Adamses were prolific letter writers (although John conceded that Abigail was clearly the more gifted of the two), and over the years they exchanged more than twelve hundred letters. Joseph J. Ellis distills this unprecedented and unsurpassed record to give us an account both intimate and panoramic; part biography, part political history, and part love story.
Author(s): Joseph J. Ellis
ISBN 13: 9780307389992
Pages: 320
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Title: President Nixon

President Nixon shows a man alone in a White House ruled by secrets and lies, trying to impose old values at home and new balances of power everywhere in the world. Reeves proves that the Watergate scandal was no abberation in an administration forshadowed by a series of successful uses of 'national security' to cover coups, burglaries, lies, the abandonment of America's allies - and even murder. Reeves portrays a man of vision and iron will who created, used and was used by a small cast of hard, ambitious men who formed a poisonous circle around their insecure leader.
Author(s): Richard Reeves
ISBN 13: 9780684802312
Pages: 702
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Title: The Age of Gold

In The Age of Gold, H. W. Brands explores the far-reaching implications of this pivotal point in U.S. history, weaving the politics of the times with the gripping stories of individuals that displays both the best and the worse of the American character. He discusses the national issues that exploded around the ratification of California's statehood, hastening the clouds that would lead to the Civil War. He tells the stories of the great fortunes made by such memorable figures as John and Jessie Fremont, Leland Stanford and George Hearst -- and of great fortunes lost by hundreds now forgotten by history. And he reveals the profound effect of the Gold Rush on the way Americans viewed their destinies, as the Puritan ethic of hard work and the gradual accumulation of worldly riches gave way to the notion of getting rich quickly.
Author(s): H. W. Brands
ISBN 13: 9780385502160
Pages: 547
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Title: Seizing Destiny

Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Richard Kluger chronicles this epic achievement in a compelling narrative, celebrating the energy, daring, and statecraft behind America's insatiable land hunger while exploring the moral lapses that accompanied it. Comprehensive and balanced, Seizing Destiny is a revelatory, often surprising reexamination of the nation's breathless expansion, dwelling on both great accomplishments and the American people's tendency to confuse opportunistic success with heaven-sent entitlement that came to be called manifest destiny.
Author(s): Richard Kluger
ISBN 13: 9780375712982
Pages: 649
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Title: The Guns of August

In this landmark, Pulitzer Prizewinning account, renowned historian Barbara W. Tuchman re-creates the first month of World War I: thirty days in the summer of 1914 that determined the course of the conflict, the century, and ultimately our present world. Beginning with the funeral of Edward VII, Tuchman traces each step that led to the inevitable clash. And inevitable it was, with all sides plotting their war for a generation. Dizzyingly comprehensive and spectacularly portrayed with her famous talent for evoking the characters of the wars key players, Tuchmans magnum opus is a classic for the ages.
Author(s): Barbara Wertheim Tuchman
ISBN 13: 9780345386236
Pages: 511
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10 Engaging Books on American History


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