From the decision to build six heavy frigates, through the cliffhanger campaign against Tripoli, to the war that shook the world in 1812, Ian W. Toll tells this grand tale with the political insight of Founding Brothers and a narrative flair worthy of Patrick O'Brian. According to Henry Adams, the 1812 encounter between the USS Constitution and HMS Guerriere "raised the United States in one half hour to the rank of a first class power in the world."
©2006 Ian W. Toll; (P)2006 Simon and Schuster Inc. All rights reserved.
"Toll provides perspective by seamlessly incorporating the era's political and diplomatic history into his superlative single-volume narrative, a must-read for fans of naval history and the early American Republic." (Publishers Weekly)
The printed copy of this book was recommended to me by a friend. It was an excellent book to hear, but I fear that important portions may have been omitted in the process. I will pay more attention next time to see that I purchase only UNabridged books. Still a good listen full of historical data.
Six Frigates tells the story of the early years of the American Navy focused primarily on its first six "Heavy Frigates." We learn of the politics surrounding the debate over whether a navy was truely needed as well as its equiping and manning. Battles are described in exciting detail. We come to understand the important role the little American Navy played in strengthening the nation's role in international politics.
I found the writing clear, never dull. And the narration was clear and engaging, never losing me in a monotone dialog but also never overdiong the exciting parts.
Who would be interested in this book? If you have enjoyed the "Master and Commander" series for its historical and naval aspects, you will find this book a marvelous companion. If you enjoy colonial and american military history as much as I, then you will probably consider this a good addition to your collection. I hope you enjoy it as much as me.
If you enjoyed John Adams and 1776 (not the same author, but similar in genre), you'll love Six Frigates. As is usually the case with this type of book, I feel the need to listen a second time to catch the details I missed, but it will be as pleasant the second time as it was the first. Great book, well read and it gave me tidbits to share at my next get-together with friends.
The first hour is a bit dull. Made worse by the narrator--who almost seems to be falling asleep during it. But the book picks up steam as does the narrator. One does grow a tiny bit tired of sea battle descriptions towards the end( not enough detail for a real military battle buff, fine for the general reader, but by the end you've heard too many)
Good book but not a great book. Toll's later book, Pacific Crucible, of far higher caliber both in writing quality and in depth of vision/themes
Yes for the historical learning
Have Not listened to any other of S. Lang's
Am new reader so my comments do not reflect that of others who have read more via this method to really contribute
I found "Six Frigates" extremely enjoyable and accurate. Carefully placed and dramatic details create a historically believable atmosphere and characters. Relying heavily on first person accounts the early history of the US Navy is brought to life in a factual and unromantic fashion that is refreshing to the ears of any history buff.
This is a very good history of the first navy of the United States, and of how important having a naval force was to the success in the revolutionary period. I recommend this book to anyone interested in American history, naval history, or who just enjoys a good book. The narration is very good also.
Though abridged, this book on tape was fantastic! The story was very well told and gripping for the entire 5 hours of audio. I ran out and purchased the book once I finished it.
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