Because most philosophies that frown on reproduction don't survive.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

History Bleg

Does anyone have any suggestions for a book on early American history that would put things in perspective for a 15-year old guy having a hard time keeping the details straight?


Unknown said...

I don't know. Do you mean the time of the revolutionary war?

Anonymous said...

How about a "spine" book that has interesting yet important fact such as "Don't Know much about History" by Kenneth C. Davis

Mary Hennessey

Unknown said...

A little below grade level, but Everything You Need to Know about American History isn't that bad. Should have a copy at your local library for preview.

Ken & Carol said...

You might want to have a look at the "Politically Incorrect" series: I'm sure they must have one on Amer Hist. Another possibility is the ISI list, though these might be a little on the heavy side. Good luck.

LogEyed Roman said...

I like the "Politically Incorrect Guide to American History", but then I'm prejudiced; I like the idea of vaccinating the young against silly leftist ideas when they are at a nice impressionable age.

LogEyed Roman

CMinor said...

We checked out "Don't Know Much About History" on audio some years ago assuming it was going to be one of those nifty "history the schoolbooks never tell you about" compendia.

We found it to be heavily revisionist and apparently colored by the author's personal political agenda.

My hubby, a PoliSci major in college, spent most of the book yelling corrections at it while shaking his fist--unfortunate as we were on a long road trip at the time and he was driving.

Needless to say, we don't recommend it.

CMinor said...

D just wandered by and suggested Joy Hakim's A History of Us, which I used for the kids and we all enjoyed. Though it's written for a middle-school level it's not bad for review even for high schoolers.

A few caveats, though--while Hakim did yeoman's work to provide good and relatively unbiased information, there are a few places in which she seems to have fallen prey to revisionism. She also fell down quite a bit on reining in her personal politics in the last couple of books of the series, which cover the Twentieth Century. Also, somewhere out there in Internet Land somebody's published a list of mistakes she made.

If he's not intimidated by adult-level reading, may I suggest some of David McCullough's or Joseph Ellis's books?

Anonymous said...

I second the recommendation, and agree with the assessment, of Joy Hakim's books.

mrsdarwin said...

Thanks, guys. I'm not exactly sure of the period being covered -- I only know it's "early American history". I'll pass these recommendations on.

Anonymous said...

My favorite is the one I'm reading now. America, the last best hope, by William Bennett

It's fascinating and reads like a novel. Shows the amazing American experiment, warts and all.

The first volume covers history from the pilgrims to about Teddy Roosevelt.

Anonymous said...

The Wars of America by Robert Leckie. Leckie was a Marine machine gunner as well as a writer of great talent. His Wars of America is just the thing for a young man to become familiar with the history of his country.

His George Washington's War is about the best one volume history of the Revolution I have read.

Leckie wrote quite a few books most of which I have read. Here are some of them: