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New World Coming: The 1920s And The Making Of Modern America
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New World Coming: The 1920s And The Making Of Modern America

3.87 of 5 stars 3.87  ·  rating details  ·  98 ratings  ·  19 reviews
The images of the 1920s have been indelibly imprinted on the American imagination-from jazz, bootleggers, flappers, talkies, the Model T Ford, Babe Ruth, and Charles Lindbergh to the fight for women's right to vote, racial injustice, and the birth of organized crime.Nathan Miller has penned the ultimate introduction to the era. Publishers Weekly calls it "an excellent chro ...more
Paperback, 448 pages
Published July 28th 2004 by Da Capo Press (first published 2003)
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Maya Rock
I'm really impressed by a lot of aspects of this book. The writing is good. I learned lots of interesting factoids. the author did this cool thing where he would give very full life stories of people and it was interesting to see how many people who were successes in the twenties went downhill. Also this book paid more attention to the Klan and the plight of blacks. Sometimes the author was pretty openly biased...but probably in the way I would have been. He loves Mencken, FDR, Fitzgerald, hates ...more
Dave Gaston
Taking me back to the 1920’s, land of “Only Yesterday” by Frederick Allen. In fact, Miller tips his hat at the 1930’s masterwork in an attempt to frame the era in a more modern perspective and fill in some of the more obvious prejudices and prat falls. Miller can write and his story telling is excellent. Within most chapters, he is concise with a flair for only the most sizzling of facts. In a few early chapters he succumbed to detail and resorted to name dropping in an headlong attempt to cram ...more
Mike Hankins
The 1920's is one of the most fascinating decades of American history, and this treatment of the Jazz age is a wonderful, thought-provoking read. The work centers around the theme of massive changes in the very structure and value system of American society. This is a period where "traditional" small-town values are perceived as being attacked by a new urban culture. New music, new art, new lifestyles, new ways of thinking about the world, new scientific and technological developments -- all of ...more
Jeremy Perron
As I continue to march through the ages, I now come across Nathan Miller's guide to America in the 1920s. It was a decade that saw an incredible transformation of a nation and a people. This was the era where the motorized car did away with the horse and buggy forever. Sandwiched in between two world wars, the 1920s buzzed with excitement and wonder about the new age. This was the first decade that American women were able to vote in Federal elections. In this era, flight would start to become a ...more
Lauren Mackson
This book is engaging and interesting and easy to understand. Chapters aren't very long. I read this for class and some of my classmates thought that Miller jumped around topics too often and nonsensically. It didn't distract me and rather involved me as a reader more.

I like how the footnotes are on the bottom of the page. I appreciate that Miller adds the little-known and seemingly unimportant anecdotes about historical figures. He spends a significant time talking about the politics of the ti
David R.
Entirely unsatisfactory. Despite Miller's pronouncement, he did not improve on Frederick Lewis Allen's seminal "Only Yesterday" of 1931 and renders a deeply flawed portrait of the 1920s. His text is highly readable, but persistently takes a "black hat-white hat" form that renders character narratives impossible to accept. Miller digs relentlessly for any bad news he can find in a time which had more than its share of significant accomplishments, and dismisses those accomplishments. Strangest of ...more
Valare Beauchamp
Yes indeed...The more things change the more they stay the same. Great history read.
John Stone
An interesting, detailed trip through the people and events of the 1920's. It's hard to concisely condense and entire decade and the main events that made it memorable. Wilson, World War I, literature (particularly Faulkner), prohibition, Coolidge, Hoover and the rise of Roosevelt are all mentioned. He says he based this book on a prior book with the addition of newer statistics. The writer does an competent job but doesn't really bring the events to life. It works as a compendium of people and ...more
Matt Mishkoff
A highly readable, short history of the 1920s in America. This book is definitely intended as an introduction to the era, not an in depth accounting, but succeeds on those terms. The Republican administrations of the decade - Harding Coolidge, Hoover - are all covered, as is the outgoing Wilson administration that preceded them. Not just a political history, the book also covers the artistic (particularly through the framing device of the rise and fall of the Fitzgeralds), cultural, and technolo ...more
Oct 25, 2007 Toad rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: own
It has good research and excellent information. I'm not very fond of the structure of the book, which ties each thematic chapter to an episode or theme in the life of F. Scott Fitzgerald. The Fitzgerald pieces do not fit the rest of the book, and often the relationship to the chapter is very forced. It's an interesting over-arching structure, but it irritated me. I have the audio book version, which is very well done.
I picked this book up the second summer I worked in Yellowstone and carted it around for six years before finally finishing it. Totally worth it.
Some people might not like the book because it jumps around and only skims the surface of the 1920s and how they changed America, but that's exactly why I loved it. The author connected all of the major happenings of the time and really made the era pop.
A fast-paced overview of a rapidly changing America, New World Coming makes me want to read more, in-depth histories of many of the topics, events and figures that it covers. Listening to the audiobook while walking to and from school made me consider taking the long route there on more than one occasion.
Lauren Albert
Very good narrative of the 1920s which manages to cover an enormous amount of material (cultural, political, religious, etc.) without bogging down in details. Miller also has a good eye for fun quotes which liven the story.
I liked it but it was ... comprehensive. A very dense history book. It took me 3 full weeks to read it and I read every day. I can't remember the last book that took that much effort.

Really well written account of a fascinating time in American history. A small, rather forgotten book that is definitely worth picking up!
I onestly never thought the 1920's to be interesting until this book. an easy read on apoorly understood period in history.
I wanted to learn more about the 1920's and this was a good book for that.
Goes off on tangents a lot, but an interesting overview of the '20s.
Shawn Thrasher
Terrific, especially how Miller used parallels between then and now.
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