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Lafayette: Hero of the American Revolution
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Lafayette: Hero of the American Revolution

3.4  ·  Rating details ·  67 Ratings  ·  19 Reviews
In this long-overdue history of Marquis Gilbert de Lafayette, acclaimed French author Gonzague Saint Bris recounts Lafayette's invaluable contributions to the American War of Independence and, later, the French Revolution of 1789. The first study of Lafayette to appear in almost ten years, Saint Bris’ new volume recounts the young Lafayette's personal friendship with Georg ...more
Hardcover, 368 pages
Published May 5th 2010 by Pegasus Books (first published January 1st 2006)
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Michael Finocchiaro
This was an interesting biography about the figure of La Fayette who was kind of stuck in the middle of being seen in France as perhaps too pro-American and in America and still a French guy. He had of course a major impact on history and the United States owes him quite a lot for the success of George Washington's army against the British. This book is not particularly exciting but nonetheless interesting about this figure of the late 18th century probably more known in America than in his nati ...more
Marc Allen
Apr 27, 2014 rated it did not like it
Easily the worst biography I have ever read. Not a biography of Lafayette, but a vague history of France during Lafayette's lifetime. I got the feeling that the few detailed passages dealing with Lafayette were added after the completion of the book in order to drum up interest in a subject not worth recounting.

I learned more about Lafayette in Ron Chernow's, "Washington: A Life."

Carolyn Heinze
Chiant à mourir, son style. He writes like an overly admirative groupie, which gets in the way of the story of an interesting historical figure and all the characters of this period. And one gets the impression that he's a wee bit more than nostalgic for the French monarchy. Couldn't get through it, try as I might. Won't give up on the subject matter, but won't be picking up any of this author's books any time soon.
Andrea Anderson
Mar 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Interesting and I like the authors easy to read style, history sometimes feels heavy but Bris is light. It's interesting. However, it was recommended for use with home schooled teens covering French and American Revolutions. I think it was long for this and also Lafayette was not monogamous, along with many others at this time in France. So for teens the book is clean but it does say who he slept with.
The feeling and zeal Lafayette had for the freedom obtained in America is beautifully describe
Dec 15, 2017 rated it it was ok
Long story short, this was one of the least interesting books I have read about Lafayette, who is one of my heroes. It lacked the academic depth with which I am accustom and didn't offer anything new (in fact, it seemed to be missing factors that I have seen in prior books). Definitely would not recommend.
Jun 28, 2016 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: no one, ever
I'm not sure I've ever given a book one star on goodreads before, and I was hesitate to now. However, in light of this book's many flaws, I feel like it's the only way to accurately express how I felt about this travesty of a biography. When I read it, I should have known by the completely uncritical adulation of Lafayette in the intro - of whom I hold a deep admiration for, trust me- that this book would be a bad and terribly biased read. First and foremost, it's missing anything in the way of ...more
Mar 11, 2017 rated it it was ok
At times I would wonder who he was talking about as Lafayette was often a secondary character in the story. Do I feel like I have a better understanding of Lafayette after having read the story? No, I feel like I want to read another biography.
Glenn Robinson
Apr 24, 2014 rated it liked it
We all know of General Lafayette from childhood, but other than his role in the American Revolution, I knew just a little. This book helped a great deal in filling out the rest of his life. Very profound individual. He worked to help bring democracy to France in 1789 (unsuccessful), survived the Reign of Terror, worked with Napoleon, was jailed by Napoleon, freed by Napoleon and then negotiated with Napoleon to abdicate on his 2nd visit to power. Lafayette never gave up on his quest to bring fre ...more
Lindsay Goto
Whatever I felt was lacking in the other books I read about Lafayette, this one made up for them all. In many cases it feels like I'm reading a novel rather than a history book which I appreciated. Lafayette's life was wide and varied. The sheer number of huge political events that he participated in feels legendary during such turbulent times. At the same time, I sometimes feel like there was a distance between me and the Marquis which is the only reason this book lost its stars.

I learned a lot
Sep 01, 2016 added it
Shelves: abandoned
I didn't realize this was written in French until I got home from the library. I will look again for a book in English. This is not what I would consider a masterful translation. The result is very stilted. It clearly shows the underpinnings of the French it was translated from. In a way I suppose that makes it a faithful translation. But it also fails to render the narrative into fluid, readable English.

I had intended to include some damning examples but I am away from the book so you'll just
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Écrivain et journaliste, il fut successivement journaliste à la Vigie marocaine (1967) puis à la Nouvelle République à Tours (1968), critique littéraire, animateur sur la radio Europe 1, chroniqueur au Figaro (1980), fondateur et animateur de la radio libre Méga l'O (1981), vidéaste culturel, directeur de la stratégie et du développement du groupe Hachette Filipacchi Médias (1987-2001), chargé de ...more
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