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54-40 or Fight

2.87  ·  Rating Details ·  15 Ratings  ·  5 Reviews
With Four Illustrations By ARTHUR I. KELLER.
Kindle Edition
Published (first published 1909)
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I had read this a few years ago (pre-Goodreads) and so wanted to re-read to review it. The epilogue has a great quote to summarize the book: "any who smile at women's influence in American history do so in ignorance of the truth."

It is a remarkably sexist/feminist book. It is sexist in the sense that women are essentially jezebels who can be manipulated by men through jealousy and vindictiveness. It is feminist because Helena is one of the strongest thinkers (and philosophers) in the book.

I fou
Another reviewer referred to this book as at once sexist and feminist, and I think that duality sums up the elements of this novel about which I feel most strong, both for and against. It is feminist in that Hough presents two women, Helena, Baroness von Ritz, and Lucrezia Yturrio, who he presents as having played critical roles in the acquisition for the US of Texas, California, and the Oregon Territory. For all that, women are still objects to be won by men (Elisabeth), or if they act, it is a ...more
Mary Jo
Aug 04, 2013 Mary Jo rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book gives you an inside view of a critical period of North American history. It takes you to the decision makers at the close of the Civil War, when US expansion into the Texas/Mexican territories is being balanced with US possession of lands on the Pacific coast. Real arguments and inside deals are revealed as the President is pressured to secure settlement of people that will assure US claim to these lands on the north and south borders. The story of the Oregon trail migrations is vivid. ...more
Jul 13, 2011 Jessica rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I read it (for free) on my IPhone. It was wordy at times, but an interesting take on how parts of history could really leave out key players (women) who influenced the course of major events. I am not sure if it was total fiction or based on some accounts of history, but it held my attention, with some history, some romance, and some politics.
Donna Jo Atwood
I started this book because the author grew up in my hometown of Newton, IA (He and his sister were in the first graduating class of Newton High School). Dispite being written in 1909, the book reads very much like a more modern novel.
David Beeson
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Emerson Hough was an American author best known for writing western stories and historical novels.

He married Charlotte Chesebro of Chicago in 1897 and made that city his home. During World War I, he served as a Captain with the Intelligence Service. He died in Evanston, Illinois, on April 30, 1923, a week after seeing the Chicago premiere of the movie The Covered Wagon, based on his 1922 book. Cov
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