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Saturday, February 11, 2012

1812: A Novel by David Nevin

Good but with problems

If you do not already know something about the War of 1812, I cannot recommend this book for your reading pleasure. Why not? The author, David Nevin, goes into the story without much of an explanation of who the characters are and just assumes you know who they are. I would have recommended a small two to three page introduction that laid out the issues of the day and something about the personalities of the day as well.

Dolley Madison (1768-1849)
Instead, we spend page after page getting these introductions as a part of the story. Along the way, Nevin introduces us to the innermost thoughts of such people as James Madison, Andrew Jackson, Winfield Scott and Dolley Madison. Nevin seems fascinated in exploring each of these characters as sexual beings. We get to read about James Madison's lusting for Dolley (he refers to her breasts so often that I blush when I see Madison in my history book).

However, the book is saved by his descriptions of the battles. They are very well done.

If you don't know your War of 1812, be sure to keep your computer handy so you can check the 'net to learn the background material to the things Nevin is referring to.

I rate this book 4 stars out of 5.

This book can be found on Amazon.com here: 1812.

Reviewed on December 7, 2007.

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