It tells the story of America through the voices of those who were there, from presidents to slaves. It celebrates the American achievement and evokes the sound and colour of daily life; it also explores the paradoxes of American history. through three themes - empire, liberty and faith - that together this vivid saga.
PART ONE - from the beginnings to the start of the Civil War in 1861 The series is written and presented by David Reynolds - a prize-winning Cambridge historian whose previous work for the BBC includes the 2008 TV series Summits.
©2008 BBC Audiobooks Ltd; (P)2008 BBC Audiobooks Ltd
This is definitely a survey, not an in-depth analysis. It's a radio documentary, divided into 13-14 minute segments, with music, sound effects, and extensive quotations from journals, letters, and documents of the time (read by actors). What's lost in depth is made up in variety: you get a sense of the vast numbers of people who make up the history of the country. David Reynolds has published a book under the same title that follows this recording quite closely but is not identical. The first volume covers the period from the early European explorations through the election of 1860.
"Key to understanding U.S."
This really interesting title provides vivid descriptions and background to the critical early development of the world's only true Super power. America is a subject nobody can afford to ignore if they want to understand modern history and this audio book makes it really accessible.
"a good overview"
This is the kind of book that gives all the information a novice in the field wants to know, without requiring much effort. Nicely divided into reasonably short chapters, so listening can be spread over many weeks without losing one's way.
"Great way to learn US history"
Fantastic series that focuses on the individuals which triggered, or best represented, a significant event or movement in American history rather than purely following a strict chronology. Does a great job of humanising the events in a very balanced and non-judgemental way. Very easy to listen to and gives plenty of detail but never becomes bogged down. Highly recommended.
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