Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Reckless Decade: America in the 1890s” as Want to Read:
The Reckless Decade: America in the 1890s
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Reckless Decade: America in the 1890s

3.7  ·  Rating Details ·  74 Ratings  ·  12 Reviews
"Large-scale economic change, job uncertainty, the politics of extremism and paranoia, arguments over America's international role, racial conflicts. Sound familiar?"(Fritz Lanham, Houston Chronicle) Just as we do today, Americans of the 1890s faced changes in economics, politics, society, and technology that led to wrenching and sometimes violent tensions between rich and ...more
Paperback, 390 pages
Published March 15th 2002 by University Of Chicago Press (first published 1995)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Reckless Decade, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Reckless Decade

The Invention of Religion by Alexander DrakeIf I Should Die Before My Dog -- by Joe ConnollyThe Glass Castle by Jeannette WallsFreakonomics by Steven D. LevittThe Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank
favorite non-fiction
217th out of 352 books — 335 voters
Another Saturday Night of Wild and Reckless Abandon by Cathy GuisewiteA Reckless Magick by Stephanie BurgisJill the Reckless by P.G. WodehouseReckless by Cornelia FunkeReckless Ruby by Hiawyn Oram
Reading Reckless
11th out of 12 books — 2 voters

More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 233)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Dec 05, 2009 Chris rated it really liked it
This author has a great ability to bring cause and effect into light in a clear, down to earth manner that makes reading history not only enjoyable but also leaves you with clear understanding in a way no text book does. I haven't come across a book by this author that I didn't like. I also highly recommend his California gold rush book.
Apr 01, 2015 Eli rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction, research, 2008
"Americans" in the 1980s might've been a better subtitle - as in portraits of rich, powerful, famous men of the 1890s. While this approach allowed some insight into the culture as a whole - a chapter on Rockefeller, Carnegie, and Morgan sketched the impacts of industrialization, and a comparison of Booker Washington to W.E.B. DuBois opened a window into race relations - the book, though solid and well-researched, is well-suited to those who like reading about influential men, not those looking f ...more
Jeremy Perron
Aug 18, 2012 Jeremy Perron rated it it was amazing
The Restless Decade of H.W. Brands is a book that lives up to its name. Brands takes his readers for a trip although out America in the last decade of the nineteenth century. Brands presents a nation that is on the edge, with the end of century that began with President John Adams and finished with William McKinley; saw the nation grow from the Appalachian Mountains to the Pacific Ocean; split in half and fight; and the saw the end of slavery and the beginning of Jim Crow, the American people we ...more
Nov 11, 2012 Craig rated it liked it
One of Brands' earlier books (written in 1995) and perhaps it shows as it isn't on par with some of his more recent books which are consistently fascinating and informative. This one tries to cover the important events of the 1890s which seems simple enough. Yet, as Brands shows, the 1890s brought to America widespread social, political, and economic changes, and in that regard I feel this book could have been more effective if it had concentrated on just one of those three main aspects.

Rylan McQuade
Jan 15, 2012 Rylan McQuade rated it liked it
This book really taught me a lot about the 1890s. There were some 4-star parts: I really liked the Imperialism chapter, and the stories about annexing the Philippines and the Spanish-American War were very good. Also, I liked how the author recaps and evaluates everything in the Epilogue. Some parts, like "How the Other Half Lived," were more bland.
John Albert
A very perceptive book that points out how much the 1890's and our times are the same. A growing social divide between the very rich and the poor. Growing control that large businesses have over our government, aggressive foreign policy and a depression that required a bail out of the government by Wall Street mirrors our times in many ways.
Lloyd Hughes
Aug 03, 2016 Lloyd Hughes rated it really liked it
One of Mr Brands' earliest books, well written in his story-telling fashion. Interesting presentation to draw parallels between 1890s and 1990s. Crisp analysis, minor bias but mostly even handed, captures and illuminates era. 4 stars.
May 16, 2009 David rated it really liked it
The 1890s and the 1990s in the USA had more in common than one might first expect, after 100 years the country in 1990 was working out many of the same issues it was in 1890.
Hind Dossary
Apr 30, 2016 Hind Dossary rated it really liked it
The book is helpful to know more about American during the 1890s in details including the economic, the financial, the political, and the social changes.
Eunice Schroeder
Sep 22, 2009 Eunice Schroeder rated it really liked it
Good intro to economic, political, social, cultural issues of the decade written in a very engaging style.
Pete Hill
Jan 29, 2015 Pete Hill rated it liked it
Shawn Thrasher
Oct 25, 2013 Shawn Thrasher rated it did not like it
Matthew Dambro
Matthew Dambro marked it as to-read
Sep 23, 2016
Kollin added it
Sep 16, 2016
Adam Haun
Adam Haun marked it as to-read
Aug 30, 2016
Vincent marked it as to-read
Aug 19, 2016
HM frye
HM frye marked it as to-read
Aug 16, 2016
Steph Lyly
Steph Lyly marked it as to-read
Aug 02, 2016
Christopher Vicknair
Christopher Vicknair marked it as to-read
Jul 17, 2016
Kate marked it as to-read
Jul 16, 2016
Brian marked it as to-read
Jun 22, 2016
Ashley added it
Jul 17, 2016
Steve marked it as to-read
Jun 17, 2016
Lance Polin
Lance Polin marked it as to-read
Jun 16, 2016
Sinistrad Of Arianus
Sinistrad Of Arianus marked it as to-read
Jun 11, 2016
Allen Patterson
Allen Patterson marked it as to-read
Jun 11, 2016
Brett marked it as to-read
Jun 07, 2016
Jeremy Reymer
Jeremy Reymer rated it really liked it
Jun 05, 2016
Michael marked it as to-read
Jun 04, 2016
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Chants Democratic: New York City and the Rise of the American Working Class, 1788-1850
  • The Americas: A Hemispheric History
  • Great Basin Kingdom: An Economic History of the Latter-day Saints, 1830-1900,  New Edition
  • Forgotten Continent: The Battle for Latin America's Soul
  • Liberty and Power: The Politics of Jacksonian America
  • Inheriting the Revolution: The First Generation of Americans
  • Black Majority: Negroes in Colonial South Carolina from 1670 through the Stono Rebellion
  • The Market Revolution: Jacksonian America, 1815-1846
  • Restless Giant: The United States from Watergate to Bush v. Gore
  • Waking Giant: America in the Age of Jackson
  • Free Soil, Free Labor, Free Men: The Ideology of the Republican Party Before the Civil War
  • House of War: The Pentagon and the Disastrous Rise of American Power
  • Brazil's Dance with the Devil: The World Cup, the Olympics, and the Struggle for Democracy
  • The Legacy of Conquest: The Unbroken Past of the American West
  • Born in Blood and Fire: A Concise History of Latin America
  • Thomas Paine and the Promise of America
  • The Americans, Vol. 2: The National Experience
  • The Dominion of War: Empire and Liberty in North America, 1500-2000
Henry William Brands was born in Portland, Oregon, where he lived until he went to California for college. He attended Stanford University and studied history and mathematics. After graduating he became a traveling salesman, with a territory that spanned the West from the Pacific to Colorado. His wanderlust diminished after several trips across the Great Basin, and he turned to sales of a differen ...more
More about H.W. Brands...

Share This Book