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Mary Ball Washington: The Untold Story of George Washington's Mother

3.08  ·  Rating details ·  38 ratings  ·  7 reviews

The Mother of the Father of our Country.

Mary Ball Washington was an unlikely candidate to be the mother of history’s most famous revolutionary. In fact, George Washington’s first fight for independence was from his controlling, singular mother.

Stubborn, aristocratic Mary Ball Washington was entrenched in the Old World ways of her ancestors, dismissing the American

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Kindle Edition, 368 pages
Published December 3rd 2019 by Harper
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The Colonial
Dec 12, 2019 rated it did not like it
With a span of bestselling biographies that chronicle the eventful life of Ronald Reagan, historian Craig Shirley shifts gears to a rather unlikely subject who first made a name for herself in the early-seventeenth century. This unpredictable dame who has been characterized by both acquaintances and historians alike as a cantankerous and unabashed Royalist hasn’t been given a biographical spotlight since the nineteenth century, though interestingly enough, two have come to light in 2019. Shirley ...more
Andrea Waugh
Jan 10, 2020 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: abandoned, borrowed
Meandering. The first few chapters were a confusing genealogy of GW's ancestors. Assertions are made with no support. When the story of the lightning bolt at dinner was dismissed but the author insisted "something" happened to alter Mary Ball Washington's personality when she was pregnant--I was done.
Alexander Peck
Jan 21, 2020 rated it it was ok
The scholarship for this book seems good. The summary of the history of times she was alive was fair and represents about 65% of the book. I would almost recommend that as a quick primer on the Revolution but for the other flaws.

I think there was a bit of an editing problem, things were redundant, weirdly phrased. The author calls Mary Washington a helicopter parent twice. Now the author should not used this term but how could anyone proofing or reading any drafts of this not say something after
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Ellen
Jan 24, 2020 rated it really liked it
Not surprisingly, since little is known about George Washington's mother, this book is mostly about George and their relatives. It's still interesting, and I'd recommend it.

The book is difficult to read, partly because of the small, odd typeface chosen by the publisher and partly because of the author's preference for strange, overcomplicated sentences.

Hannah
Calling this book The Untold Story of George Washingtons Mother is akin to calling me the worlds top supermodel: no proof, no data, nothing but me telling you it is so.

Author Shirley admits up front there is extremely little source material on Mary Ball Washington, and then proceeds to craft a 290 page book around everything BUT Mary Ball Washington.

Go figure.
Susan
Jan 14, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: biography
There really was precious little to go on, Washington's mother was apparently a peevish person who hit up her son for more and more money because she had trouble living within her means. But there are few records that show much about her, i.e. much of this book is history and not much biography. Also a lot of speculation, some of it justified and some of it not-so. At the end of the book, I learned a little, though not a lot.
Linda Mcleod
Jan 24, 2020 rated it did not like it
I couldn't get halfway through this. Pedantic biography of a not so interesting person. Felt like i was reading a textbook.


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