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Amazing Grace: William Wilberforce and the Heroic Campaign to End Slavery
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Amazing Grace: William Wilberforce and the Heroic Campaign to End Slavery

3.6 33
by Eric Metaxas
 

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Amazing Grace tells the story of the remarkable life of the British abolitionist William Wilberforce (1759-1833). This accessible biography chronicles Wilberforce's extraordinary role as a human rights activist, cultural reformer, and member of Parliament.

At the center of this heroic life was a passionate twenty-year fight to abolish the British slave

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Amazing Grace 3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 27 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I decided to purchase this book after seeing the movie Amazing Grace. While I enjoy biographies, there is rarely one that I can't put down. This one fits that bill. It was astonishing to realize that we Americans have no familiarity with William Wilberforce, who, the book convinces you,is arguably the greatest humanitarian in human history. In Amazing Grace, we learn about his perservance against the tyranny of slavery,and how he inspired the likes of Abraham Lincoln and Thomas Jefferson. Wilberforce should be in every history book around the world. But what really made this book the best I've read in the last ten years, was the voice Eric Metaxas uses to tell the story. It rivets you to the page. He informs and inspires at the same time. You feel completely caught up in the story, alternately laughing and crying. Moving, inspiring, poignant. I bought copies for all my 'reading' friends for Christmas. One can only hope Eric Metaxas will tackle other biographies. I'm eagerly awaiting his next.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Fabulous. I am a writer and find most bios boring and pedantic but this one reads like a novel. It really makes the reader aware of William's deep and genuine faith in Christ. Its really very inspirational.
clemmy More than 1 year ago
So if you aren't already a fan of William Wilberforce, you will be after reading this unless, of course, you are an unfeeling blob of molasses. The movie, by the by, with the same title, is also very good, and almost perfectly accurate (just a few corn cobs short of the county-wide barbeque, if you know what I mean). So if you are like me and adore accuracy, this is the book for you. Eloquently written, ahem, like Wilberforce himself, this book is easy to read for those people who don't like to read excessively long research papers. This is the full snapshot of who Wilberforce was and all that he did for the world and all that he had to overcome to achieve his goal for abolition. The abolitionists at his time held no hope to go straight for abolition, so they started simply with the abolition of the slave TRADE, which in itself took quite a good chunk of Wilberforce's life. Emancipation itself was passed three days before Wilberforce died in 1833.
Guest More than 1 year ago
What an excellent book about the courage and faith of few to abolish slavery and improve social conditions throughout the world. The author's style is very readbale and the story engrossing. Highly recommend it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book in the entirety. This has opened many doors and unlocked many things I had been trying to figure out. I would recommend this book for anybody who loves American history. I would recommend it for a book report. Very enlightening.
MKH More than 1 year ago
Well done biography of Wilberforce, but not as good as the author's biography, Bonhoeffer, Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Zoeyanne More than 1 year ago
Well written and one of the best history books I have ever read about and incredible man of faith.
Jason_A_Greer More than 1 year ago
Amazing Grace ….. By Eric Metaxas is a good contribution to the history and work of British MP and slave abolitionist, William Wilberforce. This work is an engaging, popular history where the primary focus is on the inner life and personality of Wilberforce, and less on the broader events of the era. As a biography, it is personal, and the writing is at times witty and mirthful, and very sympathetic to Wilberforce as a man. Metaxas, a popular writer and historian, does a fine job of drawing the reader into the life of Wilberforce and showing its connection and relevance to his contemporary times. Showing and taking the reader through Parliamentary maneuvering of the era, in a relatable and relevant way is hard to do, yet Metaxas has a light touch with the procedures and highlights the human connections, with Wilberforce at the center of the text. For Wilberforce, the central aims of his life, abolishing slavery and its trade and reforming the manners (ethical practices) of his day was driven by his evangelical Christian faith, and Metaxas brings to this work a sympathy and understanding of how Wilberforce's faith drove him in reaction to the "Amazing Grace" he believed in and relied on. Metaxas does occasionally, critically evaluate Wilberforce on occasion and does touch on how Wilberforce changed and altered and grew as his life went along, such as his support of the Whigs in 1830, even though he was not entirely a backer of the 1832 Reform Bill, which Metaxas is not particularly clear why. This is not a comprehensive biography, but certainly a worthy introduction into the life of Wilberforce, particularly on a personal level. It is a decent, popular biography that builds off much of the work of others. There is no index or bibliography of sources cited, which does place this entirely as a reaction and secondary work. Wilberforce's main published work, "Real Christianity …." is hardly cited, which would have been helpful to trace Wilberforce's thought. The reader really will not get an in depth understanding of how Parliament and British society of that time period functioned, and the economic and social issues that drove slavery, and later its popular rejection, is barely discussed. The need for ethical reform, Wilberforce's other great mission, is barely touched upon. For a perspective on Wilberforce from a Parliamentary view, William Hague's biography perhaps would be a better choice, and the 1977 Pollack biography is certainly more comprehensive, showing how all the individuals of the "Clapham Sect" worked and interacted with one another. There are times when "Amazing Grace" does come close to being hagiographic, but that author does back away when that line is approached. Yet as an introduction to the life of someone who was moved to organize and actually carry off one of the great, and original human rights campaigns, and as someone in modern politics moved by his evangelical Christian faith, Wilberforce should come off as a real inspiration and a likable, endearing person, and Metaxas illustrates this with great skill. This is a decent biography to read and enjoy on a popular, introductory level.
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I did not know much about Wilberforce before this but now he is one of my heroes. Thank you Mr. Metaxas.
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