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The Story of America Hardcover – October 21, 2002

ISBN-13: 063-5517089035 ISBN-10: 8952741382

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 672 pages
  • Publisher: DK (October 1, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 8952741382
  • ISBN-13: 978-8952741387
  • ASIN: 0789489031
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 2 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #105,422 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

An alternative title for this might be "The Treasury of American History" as it's an anthology of our nation's favorite stories: Lewis and Clark's expedition, Nat Turner' s revolt, Custer's last stand, Lindbergh's trans-Atlantic flight, and Nixon' s Watergate scandal. If the stories are familiar, the format-at least for the pre-Internet generation-is new. Adapting Web site dynamics to the printed page, the designers enhance the text with sidebars and photographic collages. The stories themselves mimic the skip-and-jump of Web narratives. Nat Turner's revolt opens with slaves plotting an uprising, then steps back to discuss the origins of slavery in the South before returning to the failed revolt and its aftermath. Readers with an above-average attention span may find the chronological shifts jolting and the cluttered pages distracting; but the book never becomes tiresome. Taken together, the stories advance two themes. Weinstein, who heads the Center for Democracy, portrays our nation's history as the crisis-ridden spread of freedom through American society and outward to rest of the world. At the same time, the authors emphasize the key role of individuals; the vivid profiles of Great Men (and Women), contributed by today's leading historians (such as Joseph Ellis and Geoffrey Ward), reinforce this message. With its lively storytelling and thorough coverage of our nation's first five centuries, this truly is a treasury. 2,000 illus.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

Both of these works provide a refreshing approach to narrative histories of the United States. Weinstein (Perjury: The Hiss-Chambers Case), the founder and president of the Center for Democracy, and juvenile author Rubel here offer a college-level work that revolves around 26 events from American history, beginning with Cort s and Moctezuma and concluding with September 11, 2001. This approach allows the authors to contextualize events by describing a period in greater detail than in a broad overview. This thematic approach is nicely supplemented by a broad array of illustrative material, ranging from cartoons to contemporary maps, and both the layout and the graphic design are aesthetically pleasing. Each chapter is supplemented by a two-page biographical essay written by a well-regarded historian (e.g., Elliot West, Joseph Ellis, and Robert Dallek). Hakim's Freedom: A History of Us is the companion to the PBS series set to air in January 2003 and is loosely based on her popular ten-volume series, A History of Us. Hakim, a former reporter, editor, and teacher, was reportedly so appalled by the history texts her grandchildren were reading in junior high school that she set out to write her own. Her book is an extraordinary departure from the typical text found in most public schools. Her voice resonates throughout, and her tone is that of a knowledgeable but opinionated maternal figure who doesn't let every detail keep her from crafting a great story. Her work too is copiously illustrated. Although written for different audiences, both of these books are highly recommended for public libraries.
Daniel Liestman, Florida Gulf Coast Univ. Lib. Svcs., Ft. Myers
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Customer Reviews

First, this is an exceptionally handsome book.
D. Bartholome
The book provides finely detailed stories and backgrounds on many topics that are barely touched on in our standard text.
james r. gill
The writing by itself makes this book a must have for American history lovers.
Monty Rainey

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Mr. Nc Shackley on September 9, 2003
Format: Hardcover
Beautifully presented, wonderfully written and provided with photographs and fascinating drawings throughout, The Story of America brings the USA's history to life like no other I have ever read. Twenty six chosen stories are employed to narrate its history, including The Founding of Jamestown, The battle of Little Bighorn and The Cuban Missile Crisis. Interestingly, other events that would only usually be given a brief treatment in history books, are given an in depth description here, such as Charles Lindbergh's Flight.
My only warning to potential readers/purchasers is that because, as stated, twenty six stories are used, they are described in great depth, and as the author explains at the beginning of the book, "We have made space for these details by omitting other people and events in order to deepen the context of each chapter". For example, Abraham Lincoln's profile is less than a page, whereas Lillian Hellman is given two full pages. This not to say, however, that other people and events have been completely omitted. Throughout the book, green shaded sidebars describe other characters and happenings outside the twenty six stories selected.
So, if you would like a book that covers a wide scope of history with not so much detail for each account, then it would be better to look elsewhere. If, however, you desire a unique, eye pleasing and above all enjoyable account of America's history, then look no further.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By james r. gill on March 3, 2003
Format: Hardcover
As a relatively new A.P. U.S.History teacher, I am faced with providing the "most bang for the buck" to my high school juniors in preparing them for the spring A.P. exam. "The Story of America" has provided me with excellent backup for the standard text I use in the A.P. class. It is so helpful that I have recommended it to my supervisor as a supplementary text for all of our International Baccalaureate students in future years. The book provides finely detailed stories and backgrounds on many topics that are barely touched on in our standard text. I don't want to belabor the readers with examples I find fascinating, but I sincerely believe that any serious History teacher would find this work immensely helpful.
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13 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Anne Boynton on September 30, 2005
Format: Hardcover
I was so pleased to find this book, which looked like a great history resource -- it has an attractive, if slightly busy layout, with lots of interesting sidebars and photos. A casual dip into the text suggested a writing style which would hold the attention of a high school student.

Now trying to use it as a resource I find that it presents a single interpretation of history as if it is fact. There is no information about what sources are used to develop the interpretation, and no acknowledgment that there might be alternative interpretations. It is truly history as story, presented as if in the voice of an unbiased, omniscient narrator. There is no attempt to develop a critical understanding of multiple perspectives on events or the process of doing historical analysis. Even when I agree with their interpretation (frequently but not always), presenting that interpretation without reference to supporting evidence is the LAST message I want to send young scholars about the nature of history.

Attractive and nicely written, I won't be using this text as a primary resource because it does not encourage critical thinking about history.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I had an earlier (much slimmer) version when I was an early teenager and read it again and again. Great pictures, lots of small articles and the big picture too. This one is updated and much thicker! My son (12) loves to read it and tells me things he learned. Whether it's just looking at pictures of early artifacts, reading about someone interesting, or telling me about 9/11 (which is where the book ends), he is learning a lot and very excited about how great our country is!

I'm very proud of him and glad that he finds our history so fascinating! Also, this book goes really well with the Liberty's Kids DVD's. These are VERY well done and a great bargain. So much talent and so much history presented in a fun way! $5 for 4 DVD's worth of history!

http://www.amazon.com/Libertys-Kids-Complete-Walter-Cronkite/dp/B00CMDPTTA/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1426860804&sr=8-1&keywords=libert%27s+kids
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Format: Hardcover
This book has tons of information about so many things (it weighs quite a bit, too). It goes from the "beginning" to 9/11. It is somewhat linear but there are so many little side bars and side stories, that reading it is rather complicated. I thought they spent a lot of time on Custer--Why?

I was also surprised at how cheap this book is. Printed on very high quality paper and so many pictures, etc. in its 700 pages. All for $20? Must have a lot sitting on the shelf.

Interesting extra book, but I would not want to lug this book around for a history class
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By janice on October 23, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Am delighted with The Story Of America, it is clearly and consicly written with excellent illustrations and it covers every aspect of American history that I required.
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