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"Nathaniel Philbrick is a masterly storyteller. Here he seeks to elevate the naval battles between the French and British to a central place in the history of the American Revolution. He succeeds, marvelously."--The New York Times Book Review
The thrilling story of the year that won the Revolutionary War from the New York Times bestselling author of In the Heart of the Sea and Valiant Ambition
In the fall of 1780, after five frustrating years of war, George Washington had come to realize that the only way to defeat the British Empire was with the help of the French navy. But as he had learned after two years of trying, coordinating his army's movements with those of a fleet of warships based thousands of miles away was next to impossible. And then, on September 5, 1781, the impossible happened. Recognized today as one of the most important naval engagements in the history of the world, the Battle of the Chesapeake--fought without a single American ship--made the subsequent victory of the Americans at Yorktown a virtual inevitability.
In a narrative that moves from Washington's headquarters on the Hudson River, to the wooded hillside in North Carolina where Nathanael Greene fought Lord Cornwallis to a vicious draw, to Lafayette's brilliant series of maneuvers across Tidewater Virginia, Philbrick details the epic and suspenseful year through to its triumphant conclusion. A riveting and wide-ranging story, full of dramatic, unexpected turns, In the Hurricane's Eye reveals that the fate of the American Revolution depended, in the end, on Washington and the sea.
About the Author
Nathaniel Philbrick is the author of In the Heart of the Sea, winner of the National Book Award; Mayflower, finalist for the Pulitzer Prize; Valiant Ambition, winner of the George Washington Prize; Bunker Hill, winner of the New England Book Award; Sea of Glory; The Last Stand; Why Read Moby Dick?; Away Off Shore; and Second Wind.
"[Philbrick], an accomplished popular historian…excels when writing about sailors and the ocean. He vividly renders the interplay of skill and chaos in naval combat by massive fleets, as well as the fury of hurricanes...In the Hurricane’s Eye delivers on the author’s promise to 'put the sea where it properly belongs: at the center of the story.'"—Wall Street Journal
"Nathaniel Philbrick is a masterly storyteller. Here he seeks to elevate the naval battles between the French and British to a central place in the history of the American Revolution. He succeeds, marvelously. He can relate in a word or two what others might take a chapter to expound...As a writer, I’m envious of Philbrick’s talents, but as a reader, I’m grateful."—The New York Times Book Review
"Told with all the zest and eloquence [Philbrick’s] millions of readers have come to expect. Philbrick is right to observe that this epic afternoon of cannon fire on the coastal sea-lanes is largely overlooked in popular accounts of the Revolution; In the Hurricane's Eye is exactly the kind of rousing narrative account it deserves.”—Christian Science Monitor
"A gripping narrative about the year that won the Revolutionary War.” —The New York Post
“Magnificent… Philbrick’s writing is just superb, and while he manages to incorporate many marvelous and little know stories and vignettes, the book reads almost like a Tom Clancy thriller, with political intrigue, international machinations, and suspense keeping the pages turning even if the reader is already basically familiar with the story…This book will delight, educate, and entertain while it brings to light the genius, chance, and sacrifice that finally brought about America’s independence.”—NY Journal of Books
"A thoroughly enjoyable account of the moment that allowed the United States to morph from rebellious territory into an independent nation. It is another Philbrick masterpiece that will engage and entertain readers for generations...Philbrick’s exhaustive research into the events leading to Yorktown cast new light on Washington’s value as a strategic military planner and his understanding of naval warfare."—HistoryNet
"A vivid, richly detailed account of the final battles that educates and entertains while it also makes very clear the colonists’ risks and sacrifices that led to America’s independence...Nathaniel Philbrick’s writing is impeccable. The book incorporates many little-known vignettes about the war and reads like a thriller."—Missourian.com
"A great read. In true Philbrick style, it features a flowing narrative with engaging details and interesting anecdotes about America’s struggle to gain its independence while providing insight into Washington’s brilliance as one of the leading military commanders of his era.”—The Patriot Ledger
"A gripping account of the campaigns of 1781."—Chapter16.org
"A tense, richly detailed narrative of the American Revolution...Philbrick reprises the protagonists of his last history of the War of Independence in a meticulously researched recounting of the events leading up to the colonists' victory at the Battle of Yorktown...Philbrick, a sailor himself, recounts the strategic maneuvering involved in the many naval encounters: ships' positions, wind direction and strength, and the "disorienting cloud of fire and smoke" that often imperiled the fleet."—Kirkus Reviews
"Readers of Revolutionary War history will be enrapt by the blow-by-blow detail of this lively narrative, which is supported by countless letters and journal entries from key participants."—Library Journal
"Another insightful and accessible account…This thought-provoking history will deepen readers’ understanding of how the U.S. achieved its independence.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
"Philbrick manages to impart the immediacy of breaking news to his descriptions of marches, skirmishes and battles...He places the reader in the midst of the fray."—Bookpage
"All readers interested in the Revolutionary War, and especially fans of naval history, will find Philbrick's fresh account rewarding, right through the epilogue."—Booklist
Praise for Valiant Ambition:
"Clear and insightful, it consolidates his reputation as one of America's foremost practitioners of narrative nonfiction." —The Wall Street Journal
"May be one of the greatest what-if books of the age--a volume that turns one of America's best-known narratives on its head."—The Boston Globe
"A suspenseful, richly detailed, and deeply researched book"—The New York Review of Books
"History at its most compelling: political machinations, military jostling and outright treachery. And Philbrick's vivid writing brings the whistling cannon balls and half-frozen soldiers to life (and death) in vivid detail."—The Seattle Times
"The near-tragic nature of the drama hinges not on any military secrets Arnold gave to the British but on an open secret: the weakness of the patriot cause....Arnold's betrayal still makes for great drama, proving once again that the supposed villains of a story are usually the most interesting."—The New York Times Book Review
"Philbrick wants his readers to experience the terror, the suffering and the adrenaline rush of battle, and he wants us to grit our teeth at our early politicians who, by their pettiness and shortsightedness, shape military events as profoundly as generals and admirals do. Finally, he reveals the emotional and physical cost of war on colonial society. He succeeds on all fronts."—The Washington Post
Praise for Bunker Hill:
"A masterpiece of narrative and perspective."—The Boston Globe
"A tour de force."—Chicago Tribune
"Popular history at its best--a taut narrative with a novelist's touch, grounded in careful research."—Miami Herald
"A story that resonates with leadership lessons for all times."—Walter Isaacson, The Washington Post