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Old 06-04-2008, 07:50 AM
Location: New Orleans
135 posts, read 404,506 times
Reputation: 75


Originally Posted by gemkeeper View Post
The book of the moment is Presidential Courage, Brave Leaders and How They Changed America (1789-1989) by Michael Beschloss. It is a stirring collection of moments in American history that hung in the balance on a President's words and actions.
that sounds good, i think i'm going to look this one up!
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Old 03-20-2010, 07:31 PM
1 posts, read 749 times
Reputation: 10
Check out Liberty Book Clubs: A community of history scholars and book enthusiasts (http://www.LibertyBookClub.com - broken link) if you're interested in starting or joining a book club focused on American history
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Old 03-20-2010, 11:48 PM
Location: central Oregon
1,906 posts, read 2,484,297 times
Reputation: 2489
Originally Posted by Robhu View Post
One of the best series of historical novels I have ever read is John Jakes "Kent Family Chronicles".
It is an 8 book series of a fictional family intertwined with factually correct people, places, and events. The way the author blends in the fictional family with actual American history is superb. I learned more about American history from reading these books than I ever learned in a class room or from reading school text books on history.
John Jakes writes in a way that makes you feel like you were there and experiencing the events.
I highly recommend this series.
They were written back in the 70's and I have worn mine out from reading the books again and again over the years.
I am going to try to find this series of books on ebay and buy them again.
I enjoyed and learned more about the ideas, everyday life and attitudes and struggles of early Americans from the Kent Family Chronicles than I ever learned in a class room.
The Kent family is fictional although there is a Kent or Kentland in England still today. The historical facts were as correct as research could make them.
A very good read.
I think they should be required reading in every high school in the country.
Did I mention I really liked these books??
I am an American history buff and it takes something a little special to really get me interested since I have read so much on the subject.
This series of books really grabbed my attention.
There is one drawback though. I have found myself still reading when the birds started chirping in the morning.
Whoops. Where did the time go?
Since someone opened this old thread I just have to put in my two cents worth and agree with this old post.

However, I am not history buff. In fact, I hated history in school and just barely passed the subject year after year.
I do love to read! One night (in 1978) I was working at a 24 hour day care center and was totally bored after all the kids were asleep. Someone left a paperback copy of The Bastard on a shelf and I picked it up and began reading it. I had to take it home with me and finished it rather quickly.
I fell in love with the Kent family and wanted more. I soon found where I could order the whole set (in hardback) and promptly did so. I received the first 7 books - had to wait for the last book.
John Jakes makes history come alive!
ANY book he writes is sure to teach the reader about that particular time period.
I am slowly collecting all his works and hope to have them all in hardback one day.
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Old 03-21-2010, 08:55 AM
Location: Aloverton
6,564 posts, read 14,181,077 times
Reputation: 10162
Originally Posted by TKramar View Post
Honestly? There two books by Richard Shenkman I'd check out. One is called "Lies, Legends, and other Cherished Myths"; the other is along the same lines.
I wouldn't put too much stock in those particular works of Shenkman's. I'm completely sympathetic to his general concept, but his research and context just are often not very good. In short, you can't consistently take his word. In history, that's a paralytic weakness.
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Old 03-21-2010, 08:56 AM
Location: Aloverton
6,564 posts, read 14,181,077 times
Reputation: 10162
Originally Posted by colorado native View Post
It doesn't get much more relevant or comprehensive than People's History of the United States: 1492 to Present by Howard Zinn

Scathing, scholarly, and depressing as hell.
And when it comes to Zinn's own lifetime, degenerates into a disastrous failure, pure polemic casting aside even the slightest hint of trying to tell history. I thought it was pretty good until that point, but afterward...ugh. Gives one a pretty good idea how p.o.'ed he was the whole time, I suppose.
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