A Few Acres of Snow: The Saga of the French and Indian Wars

A Few Acres of Snow: The Saga of the French and Indian Wars

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By (author) Robert Leckie

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  • Publisher: John Wiley & Sons Inc
  • Format: Paperback | 400 pages
  • Dimensions: 154mm x 232mm x 22mm | 580g
  • Publication date: 18 September 2000
  • Publication City/Country: New York
  • ISBN 10: 0471390208
  • ISBN 13: 9780471390206
  • Edition statement: Reprint
  • Illustrations note: maps
  • Sales rank: 915,032

Product description

"Leckie is a gifted writer with the ability to explain complicated military matters in layperson's terms, while sustaining the drama involved in a life-and-death struggle. His portraits of the key players in that struggle ...are seamlessly interwoven with his exciting narrative." -Booklist"As always, [Leckie] describes the maneuvers, battles, and results in telling detail with a cinematic style, and his portraits ...are first-rate."-The Dallas Morning News"Leckie's accounts of battles, important individuals, and the role of Native Americans bring to life the distant drama of the French and Indian Wars."-The Daily Reflector With his celebrated sense of drama and eye for colorful detail, acclaimed military historian Robert Leckie charts the long, savage conflict between England and France in their quest for supremacy in pre-Revolutionary America. Packed with sharply etched profiles of all the major players-including George Washington, Samuel de Champlain, William Pitt, Edward Braddock, Count Frontenac, James Wolfe, Thomas Gage, and the nobly vanquished Marquis de Montcalm-this panoramic history chronicles the four great colonial wars: the War of the Grand Alliance (King William's War), the War of the Spanish Succession (Queen Anne's War), the War of the Austrian Succession (King George's War), and the decisive French and Indian War (the Seven Years' War). Leckie not only provides perspective on exactly how the New World came to be such a fiercely contested prize in Western Civilization, but also shows us exactly why we speak English today instead of French-and reminds us how easily things might have gone the other way.

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Author information

ROBERT LECKIE is the author of over thirty books on military history, including George Washington's War: The Saga of the American Revolution, None Died in Vain: The Saga of the Civil War, and most recently, Okinawa: The Last Battle of World War II.

Editorial reviews

This latest entry in Leckie's ever-expanding series of popular military histories of the US (Okinawa: The Last Battle of World War II, 1995, etc.) displays both the author's idiosyncratic research methods and his tenuous grip on the principles of historiography. Beginning with a lengthy, superfluous account of the career of Christopher Columbus, Leckie proceeds by identifying the principal players and events in the violent pageant of the straggle for dominion in the New World - especially in Canada, a territory dismissed by Voltaire as "a few acres of snow." Although Leckie relates colorful anecdotes about such compelling figures in the French and Indian Wars as Samuel de Champlain, Count Frontenac, George Washington, and Marquis Montcalm (he includes some harrowing and gory accounts of the tortures administered by the American Indians to unlucky Jesuit missionaries and slow-footed farmers, some of whom were roasted and eaten), he fails to achieve an effective narrative balance. He does not appear to have any sort of principle to guide his choice and arrangement of details. A sentence that begins with Columbus in Reykjavik ends in 1950 with the US Navy in the port of Seoul; halfway through a perfunctory chapter called "Heroines of Both Frontiers," Leckie abruptly drops his discussion of courageous women and returns to battles and brutality and Real Men. Some sloppiness in writing and editing leave stylistic faults such as cliches ("kill two birds with one stone"), and use of awkward folksy locutions ("not worth a polliwog's tail"). Finally, there are weird diatribes against the "starry-eyed American liberals" of today and against Oliver Cromwell, whom he twice identifies as a "hymn-singing swine." Leckie is at his best describing weapons and wilderness warfare (his account of the battle for Quebec on the Plains of Abraham is swift and vivid), but A Few Acres of Snow is vitiated by its clumsy prose and odd conception of history. (Kirkus Reviews)

Back cover copy

"Leckie is a gifted writer with the ability to explain complicated military matters in layperson's terms, while sustaining the drama involved in a life-and-death struggle. His portraits of the key players in that struggle . . . are seamlessly interwoven with his exciting narrative." -Booklist"As always, [Leckie] describes the maneuvers, battles, and results in telling detail with a cinematic style, and his portraits . . . are first-rate."-The Dallas Morning News"Leckie's accounts of battles, important individuals, and the role of Native Americans bring to life the distant drama of the French and Indian Wars."-The Daily Reflector With his celebrated sense of drama and eye for colorful detail, acclaimed military historian Robert Leckie charts the long, savage conflict between England and France in their quest for supremacy in pre-Revolutionary America. Packed with sharply etched profiles of all the major players-including George Washington, Samuel de Champlain, William Pitt, Edward Braddock, Count Frontenac, James Wolfe, Thomas Gage, and the nobly vanquished Marquis de Montcalm-this panoramic history chronicles the four great colonial wars: the War of the Grand Alliance (King William's War), the War of the Spanish Succession (Queen Anne's War), the War of the Austrian Succession (King George's War), and the decisive French and Indian War (the Seven Years' War). Leckie not only provides perspective on exactly how the New World came to be such a fiercely contested prize in Western Civilization, but also shows us exactly why we speak English today instead of French-and reminds us how easily things might have gone the other way.

Table of contents

Partial Table of Content: A CONTINENT IS DISCOVERED. Christopher Columbus. The Colonizing Contest Begins. PRELUDE TO WARS. Samuel de Champlain. War in the Wilderness. King Louis XIV of France. Iroquois Revenge and King Philip's War. WAR OF THE GRAND ALLIANCE, 1688-1697: (KING WILLIAM'S WAR). Count Frontenac. Frontenac and the Fur Trade. Canada the Quarrelsome. Sir William Phips Wins and Loses. WAR OF THE SPANISH SUCCESSION, 1701-1714: (QUEEN ANNE'S WAR). Anne Succeeds William. WAR OF THE AUSTRIAN SUCCESSION, 1740-1748: (KING GEORGE'S WAR). The "Milishy" Take Louisbourg. SEVEN YEARS' WAR, 1756-1763: (FRENCH AND INDIAN WAR). George Washington. Defeat and Death of Braddock. Washington: Patriot, Planter, Politician. Retribution. Selected Bibliography. Index.