Synopses & Reviews
From bestselling historian and long-time Texan H. W. Brands, a richly textured history of one of the most fascinating and colorful eras in U.S. history--the Texas Revolution and the forging of a new America.
"For better or for worse, Texas was very much like America. The people ruled, and little could stop them. If they ignored national boundaries, if they trampled the rights of indigenous peoples and of imported bondsmen, if they waged war for motives that started from base self-interest, all this came with the territory of democracy, a realm inhabited by ordinarily imperfect men and women. The one saving grace of democracy—the one that made all the difference in the end—was that sooner or later, sometimes after a terrible strife, democracy corrected its worst mistakes."
--from Lone Star Nation
Lone Star Nation is the gripping story of Texas's precarious journey to statehood, from its early colonization in the 1820s to the shocking massacres of Texas loyalists at the Alamo and Goliad by the Mexican army, from its rough-and-tumble years as a land overrun by the Comanches to its day of liberation as an upstart republic. H. W. Brands tells the turbulent story of Texas through the eyes of a colorful cast of characters who have become a permanent fixture in the American landscape: Stephen Austin, the state's reluctant founder; Sam Houston, the alcoholic former governor who came to lead the Texas army in its hour of crisis and glory; William Travis, James Bowie, and David Crockett, the unforgettable heroic defenders of the doomed Alamo; Santa Anna, the Mexican generalissimo and dictator whose ruthless tactics galvanized the colonists against him; and the white-haired President Andrew Jackson whose expansionist aspirations loomed large in the background. Beyond these luminaries, Brands unearths the untold stories of the forgotten Texans--the slaves, women, unknown settlers, and children left out of traditional histories--who played crucial roles in Texas’s birth. By turns bloody and heroic, tragic and triumphant, this riveting history of one of our greatest states reads like the most compelling fiction, and further secures H. W. Brands's position as one of the premier American historians.
"H. W. Brands is a master storyteller." Richard Norton Smith, author of the Pulitzer-Prize finalist Thomas E. Dewey and His Times and Patriarch: George Washington and the New American Nation
"It's hard to think that the story could be better told." Publisher's Weekly
"Brands, one of the most fluent historians, spins a good yarn, strong on colorful characters and situations....A pleasure for students of Texas history." Kirkus Reviews
"There is no other book that covers the 1819-45 period with this amount of detail, so this will be a welcome addition to public and academic libraries. Highly recommended." Stephen H. Peters, Library Journal
About the Author
He is currently Distinguished Professor of History and holder of the Melbern G. Glasscock Chair in American History at Texas A&M University. He is also coordinator of the History of the Americas Research Program at Texas A&M University, editor of the Series in Foreign Relations at Texas A&M Press, and associate editor of Presidential Studies Quarterly
He has authored seventeen books, edited four others, and published dozens of articles and scores of reviews. His books include The Age of Gold, The Strange Death of American Liberalism, The First American, TR: The Last Romantic, What America Owes the World, The Reckless Decade, and The Devil We Knew. His articles have appeared in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, theInternational Herald Tribune, the Boston Globe, the National Interest, the American Historical Review, the Journal of American History, the Political Science Quarterly, American History and many other newspapers, magazines and journals.
His writings have received critical and popular acclaim. The First American was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and the Los Angeles Times Prize, as well as a New York Times bestseller. What America Owes the World was a finalist for the Lionel Gelber Prize. The Wages of Globalism was a Choice Outstanding Academic Book winner.
He is a regular guest on national radio and television programs, and is frequently interviewed by the American and foreign press. His books have been translated into Chinese, Japanese and Korean.
He lives in Austin with his wife and their children.