Customer Review

62 of 69 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Lacked the Detail of Fischer's Washington's Crossing, July 12, 2005
This review is from: 1776 (Hardcover)
Having first read David Hackett Fischer's 'Washington's Crossing', I felt like I was reading a Cliff Notes version of that book when reading 1776. Clearly Fischer's book is the superior product. First, it contains many more maps and better detail of troop movements and significantly more detail of the battles themselves and critical decisions that were made. Second, it contains more interesting detail on Washington's life before assuming command and more detail about his critical decisions. Frankly there was little new in 1776 and much missing compared to 'Washington's Crossing'. I was so struck by the contrast that I couldn't help wonder if McCullough was essentially 'coasting' when he wrote this short book.

McCullough's book is worth reading, but if you are going to choose to read one book on this time period, Fischer's book is clearly the better choice.
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Showing 1-3 of 3 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jul 10, 2013 3:19:56 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 10, 2013 3:20:22 PM PDT
I have not read Fischer's Washington's Crossing, but from the index and table of contents it appears that Fischer's book does not cover the Boston campaign. 1776 covers that year from beginning to end, while Fischer seems to pick up in the middle.

I do agree 1776 had lousy maps, and was not very gripping.

Posted on Mar 4, 2015 9:35:21 PM PST
Evan Hobbs says:
Whoa thanks -- I just finished "Washington's Crossing" and was looking for another book on the subject. Glad I didn't waste my time on this one...

Posted on May 16, 2015 12:25:07 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 16, 2015 12:34:24 AM PDT
This book was never meant to get to over indulge in specific important occurrences of the war. If you want that, you can read the complete unabridged edition of 1776, that was a massive seller and critically acclaimed. This coffee table illustrated volume, was meant to be a companion giving different insights and visuals not seen in the non illustrated best seller edition. I mean, if you want detail about a specific event like Washington's crossing, then you are correct, and you should read an entire book dedicated to that event in the war. That is not the purpose of this book. It is a quick illustrated overview of the war, meant to give the reader a quick synopsis loaded with mini biographies of war time characters that many are not aware of, and letters many may have not seen. This handsome illustrated edition in my view, is loaded with historical information that is brought to life through the written word and illustrations. Over 1300 reviews for this book, and almost 1200 are 4 to 5 stars.
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