Lofton's book more than does justice to the many attempts by black men to gain their freedom by any means necessary during the long night of human slavery in America. Those attempts started incidentally as far back as the sixteenth century against the Spanish in South Carolina, the very state where the revolt that Lofton writes about took place. In masterly style Lofton creates the world that Denmark Vesey, the leader of the revolt and the eponymous hero of the book, lived in. And his meticulous detailing of how and where and when the revolt was planned and the magnitude of it leaves no doubt as to its authenticity. It's a great chapter in the book of black courage in the land that we helped to make great that has demeaned us, committed genocide against us for most of its history and is willing even today to see anyone else in the land of opportunity get jobs that we can't get. Lofton proves that as early as the second decade of the 19th century a man like Vesey, free himself, could organize between 6 - 9,000 men arrange to have ships for support, have wigs made and weapons stored and be ready to start a second revolution to complete the work begun in 1776. That he failed is hardly the point. It was a magnificent attempt. And the establishment: history departments, political analysts, biographers (Monroe was President at the time) has studiously avoided giving it any credit or even considering it worthy of mention. Which just adds to the general impression of black Americans as lazy, worthless without any worthwhile accomplishments that deserve to be taken seriously. An impression that too many black people accept as canon. Lofton and other writers like him have made a gallant attempt to show the real mettle that the black man is made of.