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Showing 1-7 of 7 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 12 reviews
on April 20, 2017
I used this to attempt to track the location of one of my ancestor's who fought in this campaign to the extent possible. Superbly researched. For my purposes it was perfect, although I will admit that the very extent of the research makes it a bit of a slog to read through. Not for the casual reader, perfect for someone truly interested in the most detail possible about the Battle of Brandywine.
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on October 14, 2008
Thus far I have only read volume 1 of the set. The most impressive aspect is the author's use of a vast number of primary sources - really fine work amassing all of them. They are usually used effectively too, except that in the narrative of the battle of Brandywine the quotes are often used in ways that don't really support the story being told. The real problem with this book is the virtual absence of any useful maps. That's a major issue really; you get this detailed and lengthy look at the aforementioned battle, for example, but only one really inadequate map to assist you. It is the same with campaign maps; they just are not there. I think there are maybe four maps in the entire book, something like that. No matter how good the text, good military history books must have decent and numerous maps. Where are they? Not here. This may have been the decision by the editors, I don't know. But it detracts badly from an otherwise excellent piece of scholarship. If it sees a second printing I hope this will be corrected.
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on December 16, 2012
Well written and hard to put down. Written so as to let the story flow. Hard to put down if this type of history interests you.
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on November 6, 2012
The author appears to have gone through a prodigious number of contemporaneous accounts related to the summer 1777 military campaign in the area centered on Philadelphia. As campaign history, however, the book is at least twice as long as needed, for two reasons. First, the basic structure is to state an event or describe an action and, in addition to citing the source for it, the author evidently felt the need to include one or more usually extended quotes from that source. This soon enough becomes distracting and repetitious, and makes for very slow going. The second reason is the inclusion of digressions on social history, slavery, and the like, not directly related to the military campaign.
The military campaign can be followed albeit with some difficulty. Reliance on the extensive quotations contributes greatly to this because each tends to cover a differently length of time or aspect of the event, forcing the reader to go back-and-forth in the text to try to understand the tactics and movements of the armies. This is basically history by anecdote, and it doesn't address some of the key questions related to the Battle of Brandywine. Why did Howe not pursue Washington vigorously on September 12th? Why did Washington allow Howe to get between him and Philadelphia at Brandywine? Why did Washington uncover Philadelphia after the battle? What was Howe's overall strategic concept anyway, in moving away from the British force coming from Canada?
Maps are barely adequate, and no order of battle is provided.
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on March 2, 2009
I purchased both volumes of the two volume set. As a citizen interested in the Revolutionary War Period, I was happy to find these works of significant effort to explain in exceptional detail, the events of the Philadelphia Campaign. I am also amazed that the citizens of these areas cherish the history with parks and monuments to mark the locations of almost superhuman effort. Unlike today, hardship in 1777 was extreme, and these books describe the real efforts made toward freedom that today is not really symbolized by the 4th of July celebration. I hope to find such authorship in the Southern Campaign events.
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on January 10, 2007
Another in a series of great books from this author. Takes you back in time to the birth of our nation.
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on March 18, 2013
this was a good book genrally It's free so you really can't complain and I'd look at other things this author wrote
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