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Lions of the West

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Lions of the West Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

From Thomas Jefferson's birth in 1743 to the California Gold rush in 1849, America's Manifest destiny comes to life in Robert Morgan's skilled hands. Jefferson, a naturalist and visionary, dreamed that the United States would stretch across the continent from ocean to ocean. The account of how that dream became reality unfolds in the stories of Jefferson and nine other Americans whose adventurous spirits and lust for land pushed the westward boundaries: Andrew Jackson, John "Johnny Appleseed" Chapman, David Crockett, Sam Houston, James K. Polk, Winfield Scott, Kit Carson, Nicholas Trist, and John Quincy Adams. Their tenacity was matched only by that of their enemies--the Mexican army under Santa Anna at the Alamo, the Comanche and Apache Indians, and the forbidding geography itself.

Known also for his powerful fiction (Gap Creek, The Truest Pleasure, Brave Enemies), Morgan uses his skill at characterization to give life to the personalities of these ten Americans without whom the United States might well have ended at the Arkansas border. Their stories--and those of the nameless thousands who risked their lives to settle on the frontier, displacing thousands of Native Americans--form an extraordinary chapter in American history that led directly to the cataclysm of the Civil War.

With illustrations, portraits, maps, battle plans, appendixes, notes, and time lines, Lions of the West is a richly authoritative biography of America as compelling as a grand novel.

Review:

"Morgan has made the Old West his preserve with the novel Gap Creek and a biography of Daniel Boone. Here he covers considerable ground, both geographical and temporal, tracing the lives of 10 Americans who played significant roles in the country's westward expansion. Morgan's focus is on their personalities and exploits in securing the West, not in their roles as politicians, which leaves him with a somewhat one-sided portrait of Andrew Jackson. But in general he builds well-rounded portraits, beginning with Thomas Jefferson and the seminal exploration of Lewis and Clark, and ending with John Quincy Adams, a critic of the western expansion until his death in 1848. Three chapters on the Mexican-American War focus on three individuals involved in the controversial but successful endeavor — President James Polk, Gen. Winfred Scott, and the lesser-known Nicholas Trist, chief negotiator of the final treaty. Morgan is best when describing the many battles fought to secure the west. Sam Houston's confrontation with Mexican general Santa Ana is especially vivid. And the author's sympathetic and thoughtful essay on Kit Carson ruminates on the moral challenges raised by westward expansion. Readers interested in the Old West will be rewarded. (Oct.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Book News Annotation:

New York-based author Morgan writes poetry, fiction, and nonfiction. Here takes a lively re approach to the history of the American west by focusing on a selection of men who had a lion-sized impact (the title is derived from an 1831 play about David Crockett and others called Lion of the West). In separate chapters he profiles Thomas Jefferson, Andrew Jackson, John Chapman, David Crockett, Sam Houston, James K. Polk, Winfield Scott, Kit Carson, Nicholas Trist, and John Quincy Adams. The text is engaging and is supported with a couple dozen maps, a brief chronology of the westward expansion era, a bibliography, and an index. Annotation ©2011 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Synopsis:

From Thomas Jeffersons birth in 1743 to the California Gold Rush in 1849, Americas westward expansion comes to life in the hands of a writer fascinated by the way individual lives link up, illuminate one another, and collectively impact history.

Jefferson, a naturalist and visionary, dreamed that the United States would stretch across the North American continent, from ocean to ocean. The account of how that dream became reality unfolds in the stories of Jefferson and nine other Americans whose adventurous spirits and lust for land pushed the westward boundaries: Andrew Jackson, John “Johnny Appleseed” Chapman, David Crockett, Sam Houston, James K. Polk, Winfield Scott, Kit Carson, Nicholas Trist, and John Quincy Adams.

Their stories—and those of the nameless thousands who risked their lives to settle on the frontier, displacing thou- sands of Native Americans—form an extraordinary chapter in American history that led directly to the cataclysm of the Civil War. Filled with illustrations, portraits, maps, battle plans, notes, and time lines, Lions of the West is a richly authoritative biography of America—its ideals, its promise, its romance, and its destiny.

About the Author

Robert Morgan was raised on his family's farm in the North Carolina mountains. The author of eleven books of poetry and eight books of fiction, including the bestselling novel Gap Creek. Winner of a 2007 Academy of Arts and Letters Award for Literature, he lives in Ithaca, New York, where he teaches at Cornell University.

Product Details

ISBN:
9781565126268
Author:
Morgan, Robert
Publisher:
A Shannon Ravenel Book
Subject:
United States - 19th Century
Subject:
Biography & Autobiography - Historical
Subject:
Biography-Historical
Subject:
US History-19th Century
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Hardback
Publication Date:
20111018
Binding:
Hardback
Language:
English
Pages:
496
Dimensions:
9 x 6 x 1 in 1.5 lb

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Related Subjects

Biography » Historical
Featured Titles » History and Social Science
History and Social Science » US History » 1800 to Civil War
History and Social Science » US History » 19th Century
History and Social Science » US History » General

Lions of the West Used Hardcover
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Product details 496 pages Shannon Ravenel Books - English 9781565126268 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Morgan has made the Old West his preserve with the novel Gap Creek and a biography of Daniel Boone. Here he covers considerable ground, both geographical and temporal, tracing the lives of 10 Americans who played significant roles in the country's westward expansion. Morgan's focus is on their personalities and exploits in securing the West, not in their roles as politicians, which leaves him with a somewhat one-sided portrait of Andrew Jackson. But in general he builds well-rounded portraits, beginning with Thomas Jefferson and the seminal exploration of Lewis and Clark, and ending with John Quincy Adams, a critic of the western expansion until his death in 1848. Three chapters on the Mexican-American War focus on three individuals involved in the controversial but successful endeavor — President James Polk, Gen. Winfred Scott, and the lesser-known Nicholas Trist, chief negotiator of the final treaty. Morgan is best when describing the many battles fought to secure the west. Sam Houston's confrontation with Mexican general Santa Ana is especially vivid. And the author's sympathetic and thoughtful essay on Kit Carson ruminates on the moral challenges raised by westward expansion. Readers interested in the Old West will be rewarded. (Oct.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Synopsis" by ,
From Thomas Jeffersons birth in 1743 to the California Gold Rush in 1849, Americas westward expansion comes to life in the hands of a writer fascinated by the way individual lives link up, illuminate one another, and collectively impact history.

Jefferson, a naturalist and visionary, dreamed that the United States would stretch across the North American continent, from ocean to ocean. The account of how that dream became reality unfolds in the stories of Jefferson and nine other Americans whose adventurous spirits and lust for land pushed the westward boundaries: Andrew Jackson, John “Johnny Appleseed” Chapman, David Crockett, Sam Houston, James K. Polk, Winfield Scott, Kit Carson, Nicholas Trist, and John Quincy Adams.

Their stories—and those of the nameless thousands who risked their lives to settle on the frontier, displacing thou- sands of Native Americans—form an extraordinary chapter in American history that led directly to the cataclysm of the Civil War. Filled with illustrations, portraits, maps, battle plans, notes, and time lines, Lions of the West is a richly authoritative biography of America—its ideals, its promise, its romance, and its destiny.
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