Your Favorite Author?

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Your Favorite Author?

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1wpark
Ago 15, 2007, 8:09pm

I am curious to know who the favorite period author is for members of this group?

For me, it is "Gordon S. Wood" who in my opinion, seems to have an indepth understanding of the social dynamics and psyche of 18th century society in America, including some of our founding fathers. I am fascinated by his books and feel like I learn many valuable lessons from this insightful historian.

I also enjoy reading books by David Hackett Fisher (love his books Washington's Crossing & Paul Revere); John Ferling; Joseph J. Ellis; David McCullough; and H.W. Brands, in particular.

WPark

2CritEER
Ago 15, 2007, 9:10pm

Good stuff. I have read books from all the authors you mentioned above and I have not been disappointed from any of the books from this group of authers. I have only read one book by Gordon Wood (The Americanization of Benjamin Franklin) and I found it superb. I do plan to begin reading Wood's Revolutionary Characters this weekend and once I read more from Wood I may agree with you.

However, for me I have enjoyed reading John Ferling the most. I have read two books from Ferling - A Leap in the Dark and Adams vs. Jefferson: The Tumultuous Election of 1800. Ferling is easy to read, provides keen insight on events/individuals, and his books are well researched. Because I am a Ferling fan, I also plan to begin reading "Almost a Miracle" in the very near future.

While I only read one book by Ron Chernow...WOW, was it great. Chernow is favorite author of mine after reading Alexander Hamilton.

3plumdog28 Primeira Mensagem
Ago 25, 2007, 12:28pm

Those are all great authors. Fisher and Wood especially. For Fisher, though a little outside the Rev. War period, Albion's Seed is a great book about the four waves of British colonists in America.

Two other good authors are Forrest McDonald, especially on economic issues, and Willard Stearne Randall, who has done some good biographies of the period.

4raylorber Primeira Mensagem
Set 7, 2007, 4:07pm

Richard M. Ketchum has caught my attention. He has written Saratoga, The Winter Soldiers and Decisive Day. I find his books spellbinding, informative and above all accurate. I heartily recommend his productions as a must for anyone interested in the history of the revoluntionary war.

5raylorber
Set 9, 2007, 2:23pm

Alan Taylor's book American Colonies, The Settling of North America is an indepth review of the fsettling of the colonies in the 17th century. The information he includes is extensive and the book provides an excellent background on the formation of the societies and cultures that led to the establishment of our founding father's beliefs and ambitions.

6OldSarge
Out 16, 2007, 3:11pm

I would say mine are Joseph J. Ellis, LTG (ret) Dave R. Palmer, Bruce Chadwick and Richard M. Ketchum whose books I have enjoyed for years.

7DromJohn
Out 16, 2007, 4:26pm

Bernard Bailyn, context and perspective.

8JNagarya
Mar 23, 2008, 6:24pm

I don't actually have a favorite author (and I think it's easily understood that a legislature/General Court is rarely if ever anyone's favorite author), as I have gathered but have yet to read histories (and biographies) of the period (well, now that I think about it, have read some of Bailyn's Ordeal of Thomas Hutchinson, and of various other books on the period).

I do have a favorite editor, though, as I've exclusively -- due most to preference and time constraints -- researched and studied the law/legal history from earliest foundings (New-Plimoth Colony; its laws began 1623) to and through "revolution," and to and through ratifications of Constitution and Bill of Rights.

That favorite editor: William Henry Whitmore. Superb scholarship on, in particular, Massachusetts-Bay Colony laws.

Though I don't confine myself to that colony, finding the laws/legal history of colonies other than New-Plimoth and Massachusetts-Bay is difficult, as most modern facsimile publications of them are out of print and unavailable, though I'm looking for those, foremost being Vol. I of John D. Cushing's compilation The Laws and Liberties of Massachusetts 1641-1691, and his compilations of the province laws up to circa 1776.

It is my view that the best approach to history -- especially that which refutes the many de/illusions about the Founders and Framers and their views and intents -- is to begin with that which is at the core of every society: the agreed-upon rules by which the society will regulate itself. The law. That is the measure against which to evaluate much that is written about the (any, actually) "revolution"ary period.

An example of a prominent and present view which, as example, is written about prolifically, and which is diametrically opposite that of the Founders and Framers, is that of the NRA's (and "Libertarian") Second Amendment delusion/lie: unlike that organization, and that political "party," the Founders and Framers were sane: they routinely (as was the consistent history) enacted gun control/regulation, and more: as example, there was no counter-"revolution" because they disarmed the Tories (and, also, those "disaffected with the revolution").

Moreover, they required one to swear an oath of allegiance to the "cause"; if one refused to do so -- which required signing "on the dotted line" -- all one's weapons were confiscated and given -- first dibs -- to the Continental Army, and -- second dibs -- to the militia (which latter were either always under the law, or illegal armed gangs; see Shays' and Whiskey Rebellions).

I hope the foregoing isn't off topic. If so, it is nonetheless worthwhile advice for those concerned with (1) the facts of history, and (2) whether a particular historian is correct, and or an ideologue and or uninformed.

9joanbeatri
Dez 27, 2013, 12:10am

David Hackett Fisher.. I loved "Washington's Crossing" but have not read "Paul Revere".
David Mc Cullough, of course;
and I'd like to add Jeff Shaara, son of the author of "The Killer Angels", who wrote "The Rising Tide" (WWII in the No. Africa and Italy) and "The Steel Wave". I haven't read his "The Final Storm" about the war in the Pacific and "No Less Than Victory" that covers from the Battle of the Bulge to Hitler's downfall, but I want to.

10HaroldTitus
Dez 27, 2013, 12:34am

David Hackett Fischer's "Paul Revere's Ride" and Arthur Bernon Tourtellot's "William Diamond's Drum" are excellent non-fiction accounts of April 19, 1775, the day of the Battles of Lexington and Concord. Jeff Shaara's account of those battles and the redcoat army's subsequent retreat in "Rise to Rebellion" is shameful.

11southernbooklady
Dez 27, 2013, 8:31am

Washington's Crossing is one of the best books I ever read. I liked it so much that McCullough's 1776 seemed pallid in comparison.

I'm also fond of Chernow, although I think he takes liberties, and Ellis, though he's a little chilly. I really like Edmond S. Morgan as well,

And one book I really loved, although it predates the American Revolution, was John M. Barry's book on Roger Williams.

12rocketjk
Jan 5, 2014, 1:13pm

I loved Washington's Crossing, too, although unlike southernbooklady, I thought that book and 1776 went very well together as companion pieces. I read 1776, and Washington's Crossing seemed to pick up essentially where the McCullough book left off.

13wildbill
Jan 24, 2014, 10:38pm

I'm reading two books by John Frehling. A Leap in the Dark and Almost a Miracle.

I have Washington's Crossing on audio and listen to it often.

14homeschoolmom
Jan 25, 2014, 1:15pm

Reading Washington's Spies. Its pretty good so far but I'm only in the first chapter. I have 1776 and Washington's Crossing on top to read also. I read Invisible Ink last year when I took a class on the American Revolution and really enjoyed that also

15JaneAustenNut
Jun 14, 2016, 3:36pm

My favorite author is still David McCullough; loved his books on John Adams and 1776. American Revolution readers are you still on Library Thing?