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1824: The Arkansas War (The Trail of Glory) Hardcover – 28 Nov 2006

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 427 pages
  • Publisher: Del Rey Books; 1 edition (28 Nov. 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345465695
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345465696
  • Product Dimensions: 16.9 x 3.1 x 24.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,584,023 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

Praise for Eric Flint's 1812: The Rivers of War
"Flint's witty, tightly written alternative history presents a subtly revised version of events in the final year of the War of 1812. . . . Fans will cheer even louder if this outstanding start turns out to be the first of a long saga."
-Publishers Weekly" "(starred review)
"Eric Flint drops his readers into another time and place, where cultures collide, the action is hot and heavy, and we get to experience the best of the human spirit."
-David Weber, author of the Honor Harrington adventures
"[Flint is] a helluva storyteller. . . . He's dished up an excellent historical novel here-entertaining, informative, fast-moving."
-SF Site
"Eric Flint has a genius for taking his passion for history and turning it into powerful, action-packed stories that instantly grab the readers and plunge them into a time and place that might have been."
-David Drake, author of The Far Side of the Stars and Redliners
"A rousing tale . . . thought-provoking and gloriously action-packed."
-SFReviews.net
"A meticulously researched alternate history, a tantalizing glimpse of the free America we have lost, and a thrilling story of warfare in the Napoleonic era."
-Gene Wolfe, author of The Book of the New Sun

"From the Hardcover edition."

Praise for Eric Flint's 1812: The Rivers of War

"Flint's witty, tightly written alternative history presents a subtly revised version of events in the final year of the War of 1812. . . . Fans will cheer even louder if this outstanding start turns out to be the first of a long saga."
-Publishers Weekly""(starred review)

"Eric Flint drops his readers into another time and place, where cultures collide, the action is hot and heavy, and we get to experience the best of the human spirit."
-David Weber, author of the Honor Harrington adventures

"[Flint is] a helluva storyteller. . . . He's dished up an excellent historical novel here-entertaining, informative, fast-moving."
-SF Site

"Eric Flint has a genius for taking his passion for history and turning it into powerful, action-packed stories that instantly grab the readers and plunge them into a time and place that might have been."
-David Drake, author of The Far Side of the Stars and Redliners

"A rousing tale . . . thought-provoking and gloriously action-packed."
-SFReviews.net

"A meticulously researched alternate history, a tantalizing glimpse of the free America we have lost, and a thrilling story of warfare in the Napoleonic era."
-Gene Wolfe, author of The Book of the New Sun


"From the Hardcover edition." --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Eric Flint is the acclaimed author of the alternate history novels The Rivers of War, 1634: The Galileo Affair, and 1632, as well as Mother of Demons, which was selected by Science Fiction Chronicle as one of the best novels of the year. He has collaborated with David Drake on five novels in the acclaimed Belisarius series. He graduated summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from UCLA with a degree in African history. A longtime labor union activist, he lives in northwest Indiana with his wife, Lucille.

"From the Hardcover edition." --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
A very interesting book, well researched with occasional flashes of humour.I couldn't bring it down when I started reading it and I couldn't think that it would be perhaps better if the American history had followed this path.I am not privy in Mr.Flint's project but I would be sure that even if the incoming war between the United States of America and the Arkansas Confederation evolves also into civil war in broadly similar lines to the American Civil War (the Abolitionists in Pennsylvania were depicted as ready to form volunteer units to fight alongside Arkansas and ipso facto against the United States Army) it would not been as bloody as the American Civil War let alone the fact that the Emancipation of African Americans could have happened sooner and the Native Americans would have at least the opportunity to have a viable state of their own.I look forward for the next book on the series
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x93dc22ac) out of 5 stars 41 reviews
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x93de1438) out of 5 stars One of the best Alternate History novels ever written. 15 Jan. 2007
By Dr. Fred R. Eichelman - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
Eric Flint covers a period of time that is very often ignored by others in the field of alternate history. His first book in this series, 1814: The Rivers of War and now this one, 1824: The Arkansas War is a period that has often been forgotten with there being a greater emphasis on the American Revolution, the Civil War and World Wars One and Two. It is a rich period with some of the most fascinating characters from the pages of our American History Books and Eric Flint has done his research. This series surpasses his excellent 1632 plus novels and he has proven himself a true master in this genre.

Unlikely as the idea may seem to some, there is a second republic in North America thanks to the efforts of Sam Houston and Patrick Driscol as described in the first book. Arkansas is a confederacy made up of pioneers like Houston, Native American tribes and African Americans. The latter group makes up the majority and includes both freedmen and escaped slaves. The big issue is slavery and how a slave free republic with black leaders would influence the United States. It is ultimately what leads to war.

While the author spends ample time on ordinary citizens it is the leading figures of the day that will attract the reader and how the author uses excellent insights to explore the character of each. Especially strong are the portrayals of John Quincy Adams, John Brown, William Cullen Bryant, Henry Clay, William Henry Harrison, Sam Houston, Andrew Jackson, James Monroe, Winfield Scott and Zackary Taylor. The political interaction among these great names is as fascinating as the reader would desire and makes the military campaigns described almost an after thought. Don't worry, there is plenty of miliary action and strategy if that is your cup of tea. There is also attention paid to social issues outside of slavery with religion being given fair coverage.

The l632 series established Eric Flint as the new master of alternate world history and this series will solidify it for generations to come. It makes me wish I was still teaching history full time as these books would be required reading.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x93de1588) out of 5 stars Makes one wonder about this mostly overlooked period... 30 Dec. 2006
By A. L. Jones - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Flint blew apart most of my vague assumptions about this period that generally gets a hurried treatment on most histories that focus on wartimes. The characters are richly drawn and fit what I've read of the actual ones while brought to life as funny, passionate, puzzled, and struggling folks. The storylines are reasonable, but surprising, so racing to see how they unfold is a severe temptation with a book that deserves to be savored. There's a lot here, even more than I found in rereading the first book "Rivers of War" and it shows you what could have been just as Houston's defense of the capitol and other choices did. It's a superb book full of fun, struggle, surprises, reluctant heroes and few villains (other than John C. Calhoun of S.Carolina who comes off badly so many times in 19th Century history he's one of the great "wreckers", precipitating the Civil War probably more than any one other person...Calhoun's a natural pivot point for any alternative history and Henry Clay's ambiguities with great skill make an even better one. Well worth the hardcover price (always a pain for fiction) and as the other reviewers comment, this might be Flint's best book yet and he's consistently very,very good.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x93de14f8) out of 5 stars This sequel isn't as good, but isn't bad. (3.5 stars) 4 May 2007
By Michael Bond - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
Set about 10 years after the events portrayed in Flint's book, 1812, this alternative history picks up with Nation of Arkansas, a nation that has been carved out of the Arkansas and Oklahoma territories and offers a new life for freed slaves and many Native American tribes being pushed out of the Eastern United States. It has a large, well-trained army, which, when Arkansas Post is attacked, defends it well. This event kicks off turmoil in the US as the newspapers and politicians rant about the `aggressive blacks' across the river and how they must be taught a lesson. Will there be a war? Will the US eradicate the young nation?

Notes:

This book does not stand alone. You need to read 1812 first.

Sam Houston, the focus of the first book doesn't play as large of a role in this one. There was not as much character development in this story.

There is more exposition in this book and less action.

In the first book, 1812, Flint spends some time presenting the plight of the Native Americans in the face of a relentless push by the United States to claim the entire continent. The social emphasis of this sequel, however, is the plight of the African slaves, their lack of human rights, property and respect as fellow humans. I found it to be a good reminder of the horrors of slavery and the status of Africans (I'm not sure one can call them African-AMERICANS at that time, since they weren't granted citizenship or any other rights. They were slaves without a country ... but I digress.) The author isn't preachy, he weaves the information into the story quite well.

All in all, I did not feel that this sequel matched the first volume in pace, plot or character development, but it was worth the time to read it.
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x93de13f0) out of 5 stars The Slaver War 15 Jun. 2007
By Arthur W Jordin - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
1824: The Arkansas War (2006) is the second in the American Frontier series, following 1812: The Rivers of War. In the previous volume, the British crossed the river and attacked Morgan's Line on the west bank. After initial success, they are defeated by Houston's infantry, the Cherokees and Driscol's battery. The untried freeman of the Iron Battalion stood against everything the British threw at them. Pakenham realized that Jackson would have slaughtered his men on Chalmette field and soon returned the troops to their ships. Shortly thereafter, news of the peace treaty ended the current hostilities.

In this novel, some time later, a Creole grandee had one of Driscol's freemen castrated for drawing the attention of a quadroon demoiselle. So Driscol mustered the Iron Battalion and led them into the French quarter, where they hung every slavecatcher in the vicinity. Then Driscol ordered the death of the high-handed grandee.

When the Louisiana militia came to put down the "servile insurrection", Driscol had them raked with grapeshot; this massacre was later called the Battle of Algiers. Then Driscol led the withdrawal of free blacks to the Arkansas territory. There he joined with the Indians in that region and formed a mixed confederation.

Now Patrick Driscol is the "Laird" of the Arkansas Chiefdom, which is the strongest province in the new republic. The capital of this confederation is New Antrim, also called Little Rock by the Indians and Driscoltown by the blacks. This confederation welcomes settlers of any race, including runaway slaves. The politicians in the Southern states are strident in their demands that this practice be stopped, but the slaves, freemen, Indians and even whites keep migrating to Arkansas.

Sam Houston was appointed as the special commissioner for Indian affairs shortly after the war ended and has been the son-in-law of President Monroe since 1819. As the Hero of the Capitol, he was one of the most eligible bachelors in Washington, but he married Maria Hester Monroe after a nationally famous whirlwind courtship. She had been only seventeen at the time, yet he had been only twenty-six years old himself.

Houston had been somewhat of a womanizer prior to the marriage but settled down afterwards. He even cut down on his drinking at home, especially after the birth of their son. Of course, he still drank in the taverns and on his many trips to Arkansas and other Indian areas.

Richard Mentor Johnson is a Kentucky Senator and a good friend of Andrew Jackson. Johnson is also notorious for living with a black woman and having two acknowledged daughters with her. Houston drops by to visit their farm on his way to the Hermitage.

After telling Johnson some disappointing news, Houston offers an Army escort for Miss Julia and his daughters in their travel to a school in New Antrim. Houston later asks Lieutenant-Colonel Zachary Taylor to provide this escort. As an old friend of the family, Taylor takes the duty himself rather than delegating it.

Upon reaching Memphis, Taylor finds the situation on the Mississippi River to be bad enough that he is reluctant to continue. He tries to talk Miss Julia into staying in Memphis, but she refuses. Her offer to inscribe his dispatches to Washington finally settles the matter and they continue on to New Antrim.

In this story, General Winfield Scott provides a briefing on Arkansas River fortifications to President Monroe and Secretary of State Adams. Then they discuss the probable results of the forthcoming election in the United States. The consensus of the meeting is that no candidate will obtain a majority in the Electoral College. Since Henry Clay is Speaker of the House of Representatives, he will surely win any vote in that chamber. This evaluation gives them a lot to think about.

Meanwhile, Robert Crittenden comes into some extra funds and buys guns for his "army" of freebooters in New Orleans. They travel north up the Mississippi, torturing and killing any Indians that they find. Then Crittenden reaches the fort at Arkansas Post.

This story also tells of the return of former British Major General Robert Ross to North America for a visit with his old enemy Patrick Driscol. This time Ross brings his wife and eldest son with him. They are warmly welcomed in New Antrim.

This story also tells of the flight of a group of freemen expelled from Baltimore under the exclusion act. This group runs into a band of slavecatchers, who welcome the opportunity to burn their papers and sell them as slaves. But then John Brown and his brothers happen on the scene and make a strong impression on the slavecatchers. The surviving slavers run for their lives.

John Brown also makes a strong impression on the young black Sheffield Parker. The Parker family continues on to New Antrim, where Sheff and his Uncle Jem become soldiers in the Arkansas army. John Brown refuses to join any army -- too much cursing -- but he is willing to settle by the junction of the Arkansas and Mississippi Rivers and to shoot any slavecatchers that come along.

After Henry Clay is sworn in as President, his administration's agenda is dictated mostly by the Southern states. John C. Calhoun becomes the Secretary of War and promptly orders the US Army to invade the Arkansas Confederacy. Since Driscol has been expecting this war for several years, the invasion is not quite as easy as the Clay administration expects. Young Sheff Parker emerges as a hero in this conflict.

This novel starts out with violence and works its way up to war. Yet this invasion up the Arkansas River is much smaller and shorter than the Civil War in our timeline. Still, the next volume may well relate a continuing and more widespread war.

Highly recommended for Flint fans and for anyone else who enjoys tales of the American frontier during the early nineteenth century, with many of the heroes and villains of that era, yet without the Trail of Tears.

-Arthur W. Jordin
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x93de1cb4) out of 5 stars Truly Interesting Alternative History 30 Jun. 2009
By Ken G - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
"1824: The Arkansas War", is the second volume of Eric Flint's interesting, enjoyable, and emminently-readable "Rivers of War" saga (and follow-up to "1812: Rivers of War"). In this saga, it is the author's intention to create an alternate history of the United States by which the Trail of Tears (the forced relocation of the Cherokee, Creek and other native tribes from the Southeast United States to Oklahoma) of 1838 could be avoided. Since he could see no reasonable way by which these tribes would keep their lands east of the Mississippi, he instead chose to create a scenario by which they willingly agree to the move decades sooner when they still maintained much of their wealth and power. The end result is another fast-paced read that is highly recommended to anyone who enjoys alternative history and, in fact, to anyone who enjoys American history since this book not only includes fascinating real characters of American and World history but shows a very real and believable scenario that could well have occurred but for the path of a single arrow.

The action in the book picks up in 1824, approximately 10 years after the first volume ends. Due to the efforts of Colonel (and special commissioner of Indian Affairs) Sam Houston, who, thanks to a quirk of fate and a slightly re-directed arrow, was only lightly wounded at the 1814 Battle of Horseshoe Bend (rather than grievously so as happened in reality), a new sovereign country exists in North America. Via a treaty negotiated by Houston, the Cherokees, Creeks and other native American tribes of the Southeast U.S. willingly agreed to cede their lands east of the Mississippi to land-hungry settlers in United States in exchange for sovereign land west of the Mississippi, approximately encompassing the current states of Arkansas and Oklahoma. This new land, called the Arkansas Confederacy consists of several chiefdoms settled and run by each of the various tribes, except for the easternmost chiefdom, which is run by a former junior officer (and, previously, a former drill sgt under Winfield Scott) and fellow hero of the War of 1812, Patrick Driscoll. Driscoll, with the assistance of several black soldiers from his former unit, has created a chiefdom where all people are accepted regardless of the color of their skin and regardless of whether somebody in the United States may have considered them to be "property". In addition to a number of native americans from the various southern tribes, Driscoll's chiefdom quickly becomes a haven for both freed blacks and runaway slaves of the United States.

Driscoll is smart enough to realize the difficulty of his situation. He was purposely given the easternmost chiefdom to serve as a buffer between the Native Americans and the United States. However, after only 10 years, the new Arkansas Confederacy was already causing great consternation, especially among southerners. Not only did this territory include some land that would be great for cotton plantations (which, of course, would be worked by southerners using black slaves), but it was also becoming a temptation for slaves everywhere, who need only find their way across the Mississippi to be both free and part of a truly accepting society where they could have all of the same rights and responsibilities that white Americans took for granted. Driscoll understands, even more than the most hawkish Americans, that war is inevitable and is doing everything in his power to ensure that his new nation will be ready when the clash begins.

The action proceeds to follow a fascinating yet believeable course toward "The Arkansas War" that gives the book its name. A number of noted Americans, including not only the previously mentioned Sam Houston and Winfield Scott, but also James Monroe, Andrew Jackson, John Quincy Adams, Henry Clay, William Cullen Bryant and Zachary Taylor not to mention British General Robert Ross (who was killed in real life in front of Baltimore in 1814, but, in this history, survives to retire to England and become an abolitionist), have critical and believable roles as this saga unfolds. I won't spoil the details, but, if you love history and/or enjoy a good novel, you will not be able to put this one down.
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