Monday, May 6, 2013

American Phoenix - Book Review

   American Phoenix by Jane Hampton Cook is the story of John Quincy & Louisa Adams during the War of 1812.  It revolves around the "exile" that John Quincy received because of his outspoken political views.  It seems that John Quincy had spoken out in support of Thomas Jefferson's Embargo Act.  Because of this, he had been forced to resign his U.S. Senate seat in 1808.  And as a result, we was appointed by President James Madison as the Minister Plenipotentiary to the Court of St. Petersburg, Russia.  It was basically exile to a place far away from Washington, D.C.
   The book is extremely well researched.  The must have spent an amazing amount of time putting this book together.  The historical facts represented in the 450 pages of American Phoenix are massive and many are not to be found in normal history books.
   To give an honest review of this book, which I always do, I must share what I didn't like.  Unfortunately, I did not find the reading very exciting or interesting.  I am a history buff.  I love it.  I like to learn about the lives of the Founders of the best nation in the world.  But when I first picked up this book to read, I immediately found myself disappointed.  I guess I was expecting it to read like a novel rather than a history book.
   This is meant to be no offense to the author.  I will keep this book because it is a great book.  It's just not one that you can pick up and read for easy reading.  My opinion is that the story seemed to get lost in the sidetracks of the book.  And while some of them were interesting, the story took too long to develop.
   Overall, I give this book a 2 out of 5.  I love a book that is true to history, and this one is.  I also love a book that is easy to read, no matter what the subject, and this one is not.  I am glad I have this book.  I would recommend it to those who are interested in the almost unknown story of John Quincy Adams and his wife Louisa.  For those looking for a history book to read as a form of relaxing, this is not the book.
   I would like to thank   www.booksneeze.com for allowing me to review this book.  I would also like to thank the author for her diligent research.  It really is good to know that there are still folks out there who are interested in the people who found and died to create the United States of America.

God Bless,

Marcus

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