New Release Books by Nathaniel Philbrick

Nathaniel Philbrick is the author of Travels with George (2021), In the Hurricane's Eye (2018), Second Wind (2018), Ben's Revolution (2017) and other 52 books.

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Travels with George

release date: Oct 12, 2021
Travels with George
Does George Washington still matter? Bestselling author Nathaniel Philbrick argues for Washington's unique contribution to the forging of America by retracing his journey as a new president through all thirteen former colonies, which were now an unsure nation. Travels with George marks a new first-person voice for Philbrick, weaving history and personal reflection into a single narrative. When George Washington became president in 1789, the United States of America was still a loose and quarrelsome confederation and a tentative political experiment. Washington undertook a tour of the ex-colonies to talk to ordinary citizens about his new government, and to imbue in them the idea of being one thing--Americans. In the fall of 2018, Nathaniel Philbrick embarked on his own journey into what Washington called "the infant woody country" to see for himself what America had become in the 229 years since. Writing in a thoughtful first person about his own adventures with his wife Melissa and their dog Dora, Philbrick follows Washington's presidential excursions: from Mount Vernon to the new capital in New York; a month-long tour of Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island; a venture onto Long Island and eventually across Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina. The narrative moves smoothly between the eighteenth and twenty-first centuries as we see the country through both Washington's and Philbrick's eyes. Written at a moment when America's founding figures are under increasing scrutiny, Travels with George grapples bluntly and honestly with Washington's legacy as a man of the people, a reluctant president, and a plantation owner who held people in slavery. At historic houses and landmarks, Philbrick reports on the reinterpretations at work as he meets reenactors, tour guides, and other keepers of history's flame. He paints a picture of eighteenth century America as divided and fraught as it is today, and he comes to understand how Washington compelled, enticed, stood up to, and listened to the many different people he met along the way--and how his all-consuming belief in the Union helped to forge a nation.

In the Hurricane's Eye

release date: Oct 16, 2018
In the Hurricane's Eye
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER "Nathaniel Philbrick is a masterly storyteller. Here he seeks to elevate the naval battles between the French and British to a central place in the history of the American Revolution. He succeeds, marvelously."--The New York Times Book Review The thrilling story of the year that won the Revolutionary War from the New York Times bestselling author of In the Heart of the Sea and Mayflower. In the concluding volume of his acclaimed American Revolution series, Nathaniel Philbrick tells the thrilling story of the year that won the Revolutionary War. In the fall of 1780, after five frustrating years of war, George Washington had come to realize that the only way to defeat the British Empire was with the help of the French navy. But coordinating his army's movements with those of a fleet of warships based thousands of miles away was next to impossible. And then, on September 5, 1781, the impossible happened. Recognized today as one of the most important naval engagements in the history of the world, the Battle of the Chesapeake—fought without a single American ship—made the subsequent victory of the Americans at Yorktown a virtual inevitability. A riveting and wide-ranging story, full of dramatic, unexpected turns, In the Hurricane's Eye reveals that the fate of the American Revolution depended, in the end, on Washington and the sea.

Second Wind

release date: Mar 06, 2018
Second Wind
A charming memoir of midlife by the bestselling author of Mayflower and In the Hurricane's Eye, recounting his attempt to recapture a national sailing championship he'd won at twenty-two. “There had been something elemental and all consuming about a Sunfish. Nothing could compare to the exhilaration of a close race in a real blow—the wind howling and spray flying as my Sunfish and I punched through the waves to the finish.” In the spring of 1992, Nat Philbrick was in his late thirties, living with his family on Nantucket, feeling stranded and longing for that thrill of victory he once felt after winning a national sailing championship in his youth. Was it a midlife crisis? It was certainly a watershed for the journalist-turned-stay-at-home dad, who impulsively decided to throw his hat into the ring, or water, again. With the bemused approval of his wife and children, Philbrick used the off-season on the island as his solitary training ground, sailing his tiny Sunfish to its remotest corners, experiencing the haunting beauty of its tidal creeks, inlets, and wave-battered sandbars. On ponds, bays, rivers, and finally at the championship on a lake in the heartland of America, he sailed through storms and memories, racing for the prize, but finding something unexpected about himself instead.

Ben's Revolution

release date: May 23, 2017
Ben's Revolution
History comes alive in this gripping account of a young boy caught up in the start of the Revolutionary War. Based on an episode in National Book Award–winning author Nathaniel Philbrick’s New York Times bestseller Bunker Hill: A City, A Siege, A Revolution, this engrossing story allows readers to experience history from a child’s perspective, and Wendell Minor’s stunning paintings will transport readers back to the early days of the Revolutionary War. Benjamin Russell is in school on the morning of April 19th, 1775, when his teacher announces, “The war’s begun, and you may run!” Ben knew this day was coming; after all, tensions had been mounting between the colonists and the British troops ever since the Boston Tea Party. And now they have finally reached the breaking point. Ben and his friends excitedly rush out of their classroom to bear witness, and follow the throngs of redcoats marching out of Boston toward Concord. Much to Ben’s surprise, Boston is sealed off later that day—leaving the boys stuck outside the city, in the middle of a war, with no way to reach their families. But Ben isn’t worried—he’s eager to help the Patriots! He soon becomes a clerk to the jovial Israel Putnam, a general in the provincial army. For months he watches the militia grow into an organized army, and when the Battle of Bunker Hill erupts, Ben is awed by the bravery of the Patriots, although saddened by the toll war takes. He later goes on to become an apprentice at a Revolutionary newspaper, and it’s a happy day when they get to report on the signing of the Declaration of Independence. Praise for Bunker Hill: A City, A Siege, A Revolution “Philbrick guides us beautifully through Revolutionary Boston, with the Battle of Bunker Hill as his story’s grand climax.”—The New York Times Book Review “Masterly narrative . . . Philbrick tells the complex story superbly . . . gripping book.”—The Wall Street Journal “A masterpiece of narrative and perspective. . . . This is not only . . . the greatest American story. It is also the American story.”—The Boston Globe “You will delight in the story and the multitude of details Philbrick offers up.”—USA Today

Valiant Ambition

release date: May 09, 2017
Valiant Ambition
A New York Times Bestseller Winner of the George Washington Prize A surprising account of the middle years of the American Revolution and the tragic relationship between George Washington and Benedict Arnold, from the New York Times bestselling author of In The Heart of the Sea, Mayflower, and In the Hurricane's Eye. "May be one of the greatest what-if books of the age—a volume that turns one of America’s best-known narratives on its head.”—Boston Globe "Clear and insightful, [Valiant Ambition] consolidates Philbrick's reputation as one of America's foremost practitioners of narrative nonfiction."—Wall Street Journal In the second book of his acclaimed American Revolution series, Nathaniel Philbrick turns to the tragic relationship between George Washington and Benedict Arnold. In September 1776, the vulnerable Continental army under an unsure George Washington evacuated New York after a devastating defeat by the British army. Three weeks later, one of his favorite generals, Benedict Arnold, miraculously succeeded in postponing the British naval advance down Lake Champlain that might have lost the war. As this book ends, four years later Washington has vanquished his demons, and Arnold has fled to the enemy. America was forced at last to realize that the real threat to its liberties might not come from without but from withinComplex, controversial, and dramatic, Valiant Ambition is a portrait of a people in crisis and the war that gave birth to a nation.

In the Heart of the Sea (Young Readers Edition)

release date: Sep 15, 2015
In the Heart of the Sea (Young Readers Edition)
The New York Times bestselling and National Book Award winning In the Heart of the Sea, soon to be a major motion picture directed by Ron Howard, adapted by the author for young readers. On November 20, 1820, the whaleship Essex was rammed and sunk by an angry whale. Within minutes, the twenty-one-man crew, including the fourteen-year-old cabin boy Thomas Nickerson, found themselves stranded in three leaky boats in the middle of the Pacific Ocean with barely any supplies and little hope. Three months later, two of the boats were rescued 4,500 miles away, off the coast of South America. Of the twenty-one castaways, only eight survived, including young Thomas. Based on his New York Times best-seller In the Heart of the Sea, Nathaniel Philbrick recreates the amazing events of the ill-fated Essex through the sailors own first-hand accounts, photos, maps, and artwork, and tells the tale of one of the great true-life adventure stories. "Horrifyingly engrossing." —Kirkus Reviews "A compelling saga of desperation and survival." —School Library Journal

Bunker Hill

release date: Apr 29, 2014
Bunker Hill
The bestselling author of In the Heart of the Sea, Mayflower, and In the Hurricane's Eye tells the story of the Boston battle that ignited the American Revolution, in this "masterpiece of narrative and perspective." (Boston Globe) In the opening volume of his acclaimed American Revolution series, Nathaniel Philbrick turns his keen eye to pre-Revolutionary Boston and the spark that ignited the American Revolution. In the aftermath of the Boston Tea Party and the violence at Lexington and Concord, the conflict escalated and skirmishes gave way to outright war in the Battle of Bunker Hill. It was the bloodiest conflict of the revolutionary war, and the point of no return for the rebellious colonists. Philbrick gives us a fresh view of the story and its dynamic personalities, including John Adams, Samuel Adams, John Hancock, Paul Revere, and George Washington. With passion and insight, he reconstructs the revolutionary landscape—geographic and ideological—in a mesmerizing narrative of the robust, messy, blisteringly real origins of America.

The First Thanksgiving

release date: Nov 12, 2013
The First Thanksgiving
The real story of the First Thanksgiving from the New York Times bestselling author Nathaniel Philbrick One of America’s most acclaimed historians takes on the nation’s First Thanksgiving, telling us the true story behind the tale we think we know so well. In this selection from the New York Times bestseller Mayflower Nathaniel Philbrick recounts in riveting detail the truth about relations between Plymouth Colony and the British crown and between the colonists and Native American tribes, shining a light on the courage, communities, and conflicts that shaped one of our country’s most celebrated national holidays.

Why Read Moby-Dick?

release date: Sep 24, 2013
Why Read Moby-Dick?
A “brilliant and provocative” (The New Yorker) celebration of Melville’s masterpiece—from the bestselling author of In the Heart of the Sea, Valiant Ambition, and In the Hurricane's Eye One of the greatest American novels finds its perfect contemporary champion in Why Read Moby-Dick?, Nathaniel Philbrick’s enlightening and entertaining tour through Melville’s classic. As he did in his National Book Award–winning bestseller In the Heart of the Sea, Philbrick brings a sailor’s eye and an adventurer’s passion to unfolding the story behind an epic American journey. He skillfully navigates Melville’s world and illuminates the book’s humor and unforgettable characters—finding the thread that binds Ishmael and Ahab to our own time and, indeed, to all times. An ideal match between author and subject, Why Read Moby-Dick? will start conversations, inspire arguments, and make a powerful case that this classic tale waits to be discovered anew. “Gracefully written [with an] infectious enthusiasm…”—New York Times Book Review

Away Off Shore

release date: Apr 26, 2011
Away Off Shore
A book about a tiny island with a huge history, from the New York Times bestselling author of Valiant Ambition and In the Hurricane's Eye. “For everyone who loves Nantucket Island this is the indispensable book.” —Russell Baker In his first book of history, Nathaniel Philbrick reveals the people and the stories behind what was once the whaling capital of the world. Beyond its charm, quaint local traditions, and whaling yarns, Philbrick explores the origins of Nantucket in this comprehensive history. From the English settlers who thought they were purchasing a “Native American ghost town” but actually found a fully realized society, through the rise and fall of the then thriving whaling industry, the story of Nantucket is a truly unique chapter of American history.

The Last Stand

release date: May 04, 2010
The Last Stand
"An engrossing and tautly written account of a critical chapter in American history." --Los Angeles Times Nathaniel Philbrick, author of In the Hurricane's Eye, Pulitzer Prize finalist Mayflower, and Valiant Ambition, is a historian with a unique ability to bring history to life. The Last Stand is Philbrick's monumental reappraisal of the epochal clash at the Little Bighorn in 1876 that gave birth to the legend of Custer's Last Stand. Bringing a wealth of new information to his subject, as well as his characteristic literary flair, Philbrick details the collision between two American icons- George Armstrong Custer and Sitting Bull-that both parties wished to avoid, and brilliantly explains how the battle that ensued has been shaped and reshaped by national myth.

In the Heart of the Sea: The Epic True Story that Inspired ‘Moby Dick’ (Text Only)

release date: Oct 15, 2015
In the Heart of the Sea: The Epic True Story that Inspired ‘Moby Dick’ (Text Only)
The epic true-life story of one of the most notorious maritime disasters of the nineteenth century – and inspiration for ‘Moby-Dick’ – reissued to accompany a major motion picture due for release in December 2015, directed by Ron Howard and starring Chris Hemsworth, Benjamin Walker and Cillian Murphy.

The Mayflower and the Pilgrims' New World

release date: Sep 04, 2008
The Mayflower and the Pilgrims' New World
Adapted from the New York Times bestseller Mayflower! After a dangerous journey across the Atlantic, the Mayflower?s passengers were saved from certain destruction with the help of the Natives of the Plymouth region. For fifty years a fragile peace was maintained as Pilgrims and Native Americans learned to work together. But when that trust was broken by the next generation of leaders, a conflict erupted that nearly wiped out Pilgrims and Natives alike. Adapted from the New York Times bestseller Mayflower specifically for younger readers, this edition includes additional maps, artwork, and archival photos.

Sea of Glory

release date: Oct 26, 2004
Sea of Glory
"A treasure of a book."—David McCullough The harrowing story of a pathbreaking naval expedition that set out to map the entire Pacific Ocean, dwarfing Lewis and Clark with its discoveries, from the New York Times bestselling author of Valiant Ambition and In the Hurricane's Eye. A New York Times Notable Book America's first frontier was not the West; it was the sea, and no one writes more eloquently about that watery wilderness than Nathaniel Philbrick. In his bestselling In the Heart of the Sea Philbrick probed the nightmarish dangers of the vast Pacific. Now, in an epic sea adventure, he writes about one of the most ambitious voyages of discovery the Western world has ever seen—the U.S. Exploring Expedition of 1838–1842. On a scale that dwarfed the journey of Lewis and Clark, six magnificent sailing vessels and a crew of hundreds set out to map the entire Pacific Ocean and ended up naming the newly discovered continent of Antarctica, collecting what would become the basis of the Smithsonian Institution. Combining spellbinding human drama and meticulous research, Philbrick reconstructs the dark saga of the voyage to show why, instead of being celebrated and revered as that of Lewis and Clark, it has—until now—been relegated to a footnote in the national memory. Winner of the Theodore and Franklin D. Roosevelt Naval History Prize
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