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1824: The Arkansas War (The Trail of Glory) Mass Market Paperback – November 27, 2007

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In Flint's skillful, provocative sequel to his alternative history, 1812: The Rivers of War (2005), the "Confederacy of the Arkansas" is thriving on the alliance of its Native American and African-American citizens. The independent nation puzzles Northerners but affronts slavery-bound Southerners, who are determined to put these inferior races in their place. Having finagled his way into the White House, a cynical, self-assured Henry Clay launches an invasion of the upstart country, while brawling frontiersman Andrew Jackson and New England intellectual John Quincy Adams become unlikely allies in a new political party based on individual rights. Flint deftly juggles historical details and asks important questions: if America had confronted its institutionalized racism earlier, could our Civil War have been prevented? And can enlightening firsthand experience overcome prejudice? (Nov. 28)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

*Starred Review* The sequel to 1812: The Rivers of War (2005) is Flint's finest and may become his most controversial book. Ten years after 1812's events, the Cherokees and Patrick Driscoll in Arkansas are attracting a steady stream of African Americans, both fugitive slaves and freedmen, fleeing a deteriorating racial climate. When a filibustering expedition runs into the well-drilled Arkansas army and its Indian allies, it gets a bloody nose. To cement the southern bloc that won him the presidency in the House of Representatives, Henry Clay launches a formal invasion of Arkansas. But rivals Andrew Jackson and John Quincy Adams form a new party to oppose the war and improve the condition of freedmen, while Arkansas, with the aid of superbly drawn historical figures, such as Sam Houston, and equally compelling fictional ones, such as teenaged African American captain Sheffield Parker, holds its own. Add tragedy in the murder of Houston's wife and comedy in Parker's gentlemanly crush on the daughter of a Kentucky senator and his mulatto common-law wife, and it is hard to think of a more powerful alternate-history novel since Harry Turtledove's The Guns of the South (1992). If Flint skates along the thin edge of plausibility, he credibly depicts a U.S. in which, given something like the war of 1824, nationalism might indeed have triumphed over sectionalist defense of slavery. A winner from start to finish. Roland Green
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Series: The Trail of Glory
  • Mass Market Paperback
  • Publisher: Del Rey (November 27, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345465709
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345465702
  • Product Dimensions: 4.3 x 1.3 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (37 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,042,407 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Eric Flint is the co-author of three New York Times best sellers in his Ring of Fire alternate history series. His first novel for Baen, Mother of Demons, was picked by Science Fiction Chronicle as a best novel of the year. His 1632, which launched the Ring of Fire series, won widespread critical praise, as from Publishers Weekly, which called him an SF author of particular note, one who can entertain and edify in equal, and major, measure. A longtime labor union activist with a Masters Degree in history, he currently resides in northwest Indiana with his wife Lucille.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Dr. Fred R. Eichelman on January 15, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Eric Flint covers a period of time that is very often ignored by others in the field of alternate history. His first book in this series, 1814: The Rivers of War and now this one, 1824: The Arkansas War is a period that has often been forgotten with there being a greater emphasis on the American Revolution, the Civil War and World Wars One and Two. It is a rich period with some of the most fascinating characters from the pages of our American History Books and Eric Flint has done his research. This series surpasses his excellent 1632 plus novels and he has proven himself a true master in this genre.

Unlikely as the idea may seem to some, there is a second republic in North America thanks to the efforts of Sam Houston and Patrick Driscol as described in the first book. Arkansas is a confederacy made up of pioneers like Houston, Native American tribes and African Americans. The latter group makes up the majority and includes both freedmen and escaped slaves. The big issue is slavery and how a slave free republic with black leaders would influence the United States. It is ultimately what leads to war.

While the author spends ample time on ordinary citizens it is the leading figures of the day that will attract the reader and how the author uses excellent insights to explore the character of each. Especially strong are the portrayals of John Quincy Adams, John Brown, William Cullen Bryant, Henry Clay, William Henry Harrison, Sam Houston, Andrew Jackson, James Monroe, Winfield Scott and Zackary Taylor. The political interaction among these great names is as fascinating as the reader would desire and makes the military campaigns described almost an after thought. Don't worry, there is plenty of miliary action and strategy if that is your cup of tea.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By A. L. Jones on December 29, 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Flint blew apart most of my vague assumptions about this period that generally gets a hurried treatment on most histories that focus on wartimes. The characters are richly drawn and fit what I've read of the actual ones while brought to life as funny, passionate, puzzled, and struggling folks. The storylines are reasonable, but surprising, so racing to see how they unfold is a severe temptation with a book that deserves to be savored. There's a lot here, even more than I found in rereading the first book "Rivers of War" and it shows you what could have been just as Houston's defense of the capitol and other choices did. It's a superb book full of fun, struggle, surprises, reluctant heroes and few villains (other than John C. Calhoun of S.Carolina who comes off badly so many times in 19th Century history he's one of the great "wreckers", precipitating the Civil War probably more than any one other person...Calhoun's a natural pivot point for any alternative history and Henry Clay's ambiguities with great skill make an even better one. Well worth the hardcover price (always a pain for fiction) and as the other reviewers comment, this might be Flint's best book yet and he's consistently very,very good.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Michael Bond on May 4, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Set about 10 years after the events portrayed in Flint's book, 1812, this alternative history picks up with Nation of Arkansas, a nation that has been carved out of the Arkansas and Oklahoma territories and offers a new life for freed slaves and many Native American tribes being pushed out of the Eastern United States. It has a large, well-trained army, which, when Arkansas Post is attacked, defends it well. This event kicks off turmoil in the US as the newspapers and politicians rant about the `aggressive blacks' across the river and how they must be taught a lesson. Will there be a war? Will the US eradicate the young nation?


This book does not stand alone. You need to read 1812 first.

Sam Houston, the focus of the first book doesn't play as large of a role in this one. There was not as much character development in this story.

There is more exposition in this book and less action.

In the first book, 1812, Flint spends some time presenting the plight of the Native Americans in the face of a relentless push by the United States to claim the entire continent. The social emphasis of this sequel, however, is the plight of the African slaves, their lack of human rights, property and respect as fellow humans. I found it to be a good reminder of the horrors of slavery and the status of Africans (I'm not sure one can call them African-AMERICANS at that time, since they weren't granted citizenship or any other rights. They were slaves without a country ... but I digress.) The author isn't preachy, he weaves the information into the story quite well.

All in all, I did not feel that this sequel matched the first volume in pace, plot or character development, but it was worth the time to read it.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Arthur W. Jordin on June 15, 2007
Format: Hardcover
1824: The Arkansas War (2006) is the second in the American Frontier series, following 1812: The Rivers of War. In the previous volume, the British crossed the river and attacked Morgan's Line on the west bank. After initial success, they are defeated by Houston's infantry, the Cherokees and Driscol's battery. The untried freeman of the Iron Battalion stood against everything the British threw at them. Pakenham realized that Jackson would have slaughtered his men on Chalmette field and soon returned the troops to their ships. Shortly thereafter, news of the peace treaty ended the current hostilities.

In this novel, some time later, a Creole grandee had one of Driscol's freemen castrated for drawing the attention of a quadroon demoiselle. So Driscol mustered the Iron Battalion and led them into the French quarter, where they hung every slavecatcher in the vicinity. Then Driscol ordered the death of the high-handed grandee.

When the Louisiana militia came to put down the "servile insurrection", Driscol had them raked with grapeshot; this massacre was later called the Battle of Algiers. Then Driscol led the withdrawal of free blacks to the Arkansas territory. There he joined with the Indians in that region and formed a mixed confederation.

Now Patrick Driscol is the "Laird" of the Arkansas Chiefdom, which is the strongest province in the new republic. The capital of this confederation is New Antrim, also called Little Rock by the Indians and Driscoltown by the blacks. This confederation welcomes settlers of any race, including runaway slaves.
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