This had to be a quick read for it was one of twelve books I have to read for a graduate seminar class this semester. What I like about this books isThis had to be a quick read for it was one of twelve books I have to read for a graduate seminar class this semester. What I like about this books is the fresh view of reconstruction in that blacks were active actors in this period of time and not lazy bums soaking in perks from republicans after the civil war.. Nor was this an homage to how southern whites were innocents raped in more ways than one. However, for the most from there it is well only ok. VERY repetitive throughout, in many cases verbatim. The repetition was annoying. Also his incessant use of loooooonnnnnnnggggggg quotes. In one instance, he quoted someone for about five pages straight. There are better ways at proving a point with a quote and concisely analyzing it without giving us the entire speech. And then there is the Marxist lovefest and interpretation of it all. Anyone that praises this work for it's "solid Marxism interpretation" both do not understand Marxism and are part of the problem with America and current black movements today. His error, beyond foolishly believing Marxism solves all, is his illogical comparison of communist Russia, soon to fall into communism china, British India and other failed labor states at the time as examples of what America should be like. Sad really. He is wrong in that all whites hated all blacks and that reconstruction and redemption was a conspiracy of planters and poor whites to control blacks by way of economics alone...oh and blaming industry as an evil as well. He also contradicts himself by saving its all about economics and not race, then rants about the racism of the south and whites overall. He was prone to exaggerate the death rate in the south as well as one instance when he quoted a source that in a given year Georgia had no penitentiary system and on the next page quoted another source saying in that same year Georgia did have one!!!!
Ok, enough with my criticisms. Despite all that, this is a must have book for those studying and researching reconstruction, especially in following the historiographical thought as it changed over the last 150 years. This is also the first major and real work by a black academic on the topic, that is important as well. As a historian there is merit to this book and field, yet it fails from preconceived notions and prejudices, mainly in the Marxian thought, which should make one shudder, contradiction and arrogance. Oh and his calls for immediate action and violence by blacks to get what they want is well, bad since we can see how well they handle that in our day now. He was took quick to ridicule booker t. Washington who wanted blacks to be industrious and prove their worth in patience, because immediate and passionate violence can be railroaded by bad men and do more harm than good to blacks. ...more
Of course this is nothing like good ol' Tom Clancy, but the plot works for me. Here Jack Jr. is not as consistent of a character compared the previousOf course this is nothing like good ol' Tom Clancy, but the plot works for me. Here Jack Jr. is not as consistent of a character compared the previous books with him in it, but expected since blackwood only helped write one book, whereas mark greaney helped with what 4-5 before the great Clancy died? Greaney has had more involvement and familiarity with characters compared to blackwood. The first handful of chapters dragged on for me but it picked up and there were just a few twists even I did not foresee. I like greaney's a bit more (of course the original is always better!), but i feel blackwood does a pretty decent job here. I think if he were to write another, I will give it a chance, just hope it does not go down hill from here. I think this should be picked up and read; given a fair shot. ...more