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Rise to Rebellion Hardcover – July 3, 2001
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From Publishers Weekly
Once more breathing vigor and passion into the dusty annals of our nation's history, the author of the bestselling Civil War trilogy (Gods and Generals; The Last Full Measure; Gone for Soldiers) demonstrates an ever-growing level of literary competence in the first installment of his projected two-volume saga of the American Revolution. Spanning the crucible years beginning with the Boston Massacre in March 1770 and continuing through the signing of the Declaration of Independence on July, 4, 1776, the story is told from the perspective of a handful of characters well known from our history books. In Boston, the Sons of Liberty activist Samuel Adams and his younger, more intellectual and oratorical second cousin, John Adams, speak out against King George III. In London there's aging Philadelphian Benjamin Franklin, who has resided for a number of years abroad, an agent for home colony Pennsylvania (and others). In New York, Gen. Thomas Gage is the ranking British officer on American soil. And heroic colonial planter George Washington has risen to full colonel in the Virginia militia fighting for George III during the French and Indian War. This masterful dramatization of the fateful escalation of the rebellion following the Boston Massacre moves from the battles of 1775 at Lexington, Concord, Fort Ticonderoga, Bunker Hill and the siege of Boston, through the convening in 1776 of the Continental Congress and the reading of the Declaration of Independence. Richly embroidered with portraits of such heroes as Patrick Henry, Thomas Paine, Paul Revere, John Hancock and Thomas Jefferson, the tapestry chronicles America's plunge toward liberty. (July; on-sale June 12)Forecast: Ballantine is bringing out the big guns for this one: major advertising, a Boston launch, a 13-city author tour and Fourth of July Gettysburg media appearances. Simultaneous BDD Audio. Expect patriotic sales.
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
From Library Journal
The first of two projected novels on the American Revolution, Rebellion takes the reader from the Boston Massacre to the signing of the Declaration of Independence. Shaara's (Gone for Soldiers) sympathies are evident on every page: the Adamses, Washington, and Franklin are his heroes, as is Abigail Adams, who, though she chafes at the restrictions imposed on her gender, supports her family as husband John travels to and from the Continental Congress. Their adversaries are harsh but wavering (General Gage), venal (Governor Hutchinson), and uncomprehending (the monstrous George III). These are not cardboard figures, however, but complicated human beings making difficult decisions in the midst of a crisis for which old wisdom holds no workable answers. Ultimately, what raises this fine novel above jingoism is the author's ability to make our national myths sing and our country's history come to vibrant life. Recommended.
- David Keymer, California State Univ., Stanislaus
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Top customer reviews
Opening with the skirmish often called "The Boston Massacre", Shaara puts the reader smack dab in the middle of a conflict that led to the American Revolution. I've read many Shaara books, and Rise to Rebellion definitely meets the bar set by his others. In typical Shaara fashion, he divides the book into chapters presenting the points of view of various central characters. Here, to name a few, are John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Lt. General Thomas Gage and George Washington. Having the perspectives of a British officer and also Ben Franklin (situated in London), gives the reader a well-rounded look at events from both sides of the ocean.
Well researched, I felt Shaara gave a good sense of who these characters were. You could sense the passion of Adams and the wit of Franklin. In fact, I couldn't help but cheer when Franklin confronts Loyalist Dickinson with the hard truth of King George's feelings towards to the colonists. In addition, the opening battle scenes of this war were done from both the strategic angle and from the personal vantage of the characters Shaara portrays. That, in my opinion, is the best way to help the reader understand the human and technical aspect of war. It's also one of the reasons I enjoy Shaara's historical novels so much.
Happily, Shaara's accounts of the American Revolution are not finished for me. I can't wait to read the next in this two-part series, entitled "The Glorious Cause".