In True Freedom, Michael Dean tells the story of America in it’s infancy and the events that lead up to the break with Great Britain and the gaining of independance. It follows the course of events over almost 2 decades, taking in historical figures from Thomas Young, Samuel Adams, John Wilkes and Thomas and John Pownall. While these are all players in the story, the real main character is Boston, where the uprising began, where the famous Boston Tea Party and Boston Massacre would take place.
I’ve read Michael Dean before and enjoyed The White Crucufixion, you can read the review HERE. Dean has a truly wonderful way of bringing people and places to life, which really takes you back to the past. I feel like he knows how to immerse you in a well paced story and interesting details in such a way that the past comes alive. The reason I love this so much is that in his hands, history is never dry. I learn so much reading his work, and yet I never feel that I’m reading a history book or a historical fiction, I feel like I’m reading a moment in history.
In this book, the chapters of the story take moments and delve into them for people’s personalities, circumstances, feelings and how they precipitate events as they unfold. The book is described as a series of vignettes, which I think is the best way to explain it’s structure, but I feel like that implies that this story is episodic or superficial, but it’s not at all. It’s well researched and fascinating, and feels like it flows beautifully chapter into chapter.
This was a time period that I knew nothing about, being someone who does not come from or live in the US. But I really enjoyed reading about this era and the social mores of the time, the pressures on people and the reasons behind the need for independance. I liked being introduced to historical figures as human beings with foibles and personal feelings, I felt like I could really get a grasp on the history and that the author was very balanced in his understanding. Another great read from this emotive and insightful author and one that I think history lovers the world over will enjoy.
Thank you Holland Park Press for sending me a review copy of this book. All opinions in this review are my own, honest thoughts. If you’d like to know more about this book and where to get a copy, head HERE.