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My American Revolution by Robert Sullivan
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My American Revolution (edition 2012)

by Robert Sullivan

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322347,362 (2.7)1
Member:pbirch01
Title:My American Revolution
Authors:Robert Sullivan
Info:Farrar, Straus and Giroux (2012), Edition: 1, Hardcover, 272 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:**1/2
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My American Revolution by Robert Sullivan

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This is not my favorite of Sullivan's books but if you enjoy his typically personal, idiosyncratic, and frequently humorous approach to history, you find this book interesting and entertaining. I grew up in New Jersey so I particularly enjoyed reading about the places Sullivan visits with which I'm familiar. ( )
  Sullywriter | Apr 3, 2013 |
Great idea, poorly executed

I thought this was a really great idea, a modern revisiting of Revolutionary War sites with an overview of how they have changed over time. Instead the book is the rambling writings of the author as he rambles around the New England area. There is little coherence to his methodology and this combined with focus on unrelated topics (his father's health, how fresh muffins at a local bakery were) made much of this book quite tedious. Its clear that the author is very passionate about history, he frequently mentions names of local historians and re-enactors, however it is unfortunate that this book was not given more editorial guidance because I do feel it could have been much better than it was.

Also, no map? How can you have a history book that focuses on a specific area and not add a map? ( )
  pbirch01 | Jan 13, 2013 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0374217459, Hardcover)

Americans tend to think of the Revolution as a Massachusetts-based event orchestrated by Virginians, but in fact the war took place mostly in the Middle Colonies—in New York and New Jersey and the parts of Pennsylvania that on a clear day you can almost see from the Empire State Building. In My American Revolution, Robert Sullivan delves into this first Middle America, digging for a glorious, heroic part of the past in the urban, suburban, and sometimes even rural landscape of today. And there are great adventures along the way: Sullivan investigates the true history of the crossing of the Delaware, its down-home reenactment each year for the past half a century, and—toward the end of a personal odyssey that involves camping in New Jersey backyards, hiking through lost “mountains,” and eventually some physical therapy—he evacuates illegally from Brooklyn to Manhattan by handmade boat. He recounts a Brooklyn historian’s failed attempt to memorialize a colonial Maryland regiment; a tattoo artist’s more successful use of a colonial submarine, which resulted in his 2007 arrest by the New York City police and the FBI; and the life of Philip Freneau, the first (and not great) poet of American independence, who died in a swamp in the snow. Last but not least, along New York harbor, Sullivan re-creates an ancient signal beacon.

Like an almanac, My American Revolution moves through the calendar of American independence, considering the weather and the tides, the harbor and the estuary and the yearly return of the stars as salient factors in the war for independence. In this fiercely individual and often hilarious journey to make our revolution his, he shows us how alive our own history is, right under our noses.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:25:09 -0400)

A fringe history of the American Revolution in the Middle Colonies--New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania--details the author's one-man effort to re-enact the colonial army's evacuation of Brooklyn and his exploration of the secret history of the Delaware crossing.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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