For Want of a Nail: If Burgoyne Had Won at Saratoga (Greenhill Military Paperbacks Series)

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For Want of a Nail is an alternate history classic. The outcome of one battle in the American Revolution diverges from reality, and sparks an unstoppable chain of events which affects the history of the whole North American continent. In reality, the British general John Burgoyne, heavily outnumbered by American troops, surrendered his army to General Horatio Gates at the Battle of Saratoga in 1777, a major turning-point of the Revolution. Robert Sobel takes a step sideways and presents the alternative version: ...

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Overview

For Want of a Nail is an alternate history classic. The outcome of one battle in the American Revolution diverges from reality, and sparks an unstoppable chain of events which affects the history of the whole North American continent. In reality, the British general John Burgoyne, heavily outnumbered by American troops, surrendered his army to General Horatio Gates at the Battle of Saratoga in 1777, a major turning-point of the Revolution. Robert Sobel takes a step sideways and presents the alternative version: reinforcements arrive at Saratoga, Gates' men flee, and Burgoyne is victorious. Rather than openly allying itself with the American rebels, France withdraws its support, as does Spain, and the colonies surrender. Those former rebels who refuse to live in the Confederation of North America established by the British leave their homes and settle in what becomes the United States of Mexico. From then on the two continental nations find themselves constant rivals, locked in military, political and economic conflict. Sobel provides a detailed, intricately documented insight into two warring powers that develop in such dramatically different ways from their shared origins.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781853675041
  • Publisher: Greenhill Books/Lionel Leventhal, Limited
  • Publication date: 8/1/2002
  • Series: Greenhill Military Paperbacks Series
  • Edition description: First
  • Pages: 442
  • Product dimensions: 6.19 (w) x 9.19 (h) x 1.31 (d)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 7, 2001

    the historical alternate history of north america

    Robert Sobel creates in his book a world we have never seen but one that could easily have come about. Because of one of the flukes of history the British win the American Rebellion. (Revolutionary War) In this world those rebels not killed for treason leave the colonies, and later the Confederation of North America, for Jefferson (Texas) and under men like Alexander Hamilton and later Andrew Jackson a new nation is formed, though not what might be expected. This nation under Jackson `takes in¿ the newly formed Mexico to form the United States of Mexico. On the other side the Confederation of North America, an interesting better copy of the government under the Articles of Confederation, is form in the British colonies in North America, to include those Canadian colonies. The book is about this world and the political and economic changes in these countries from their formation until the present, 1971-72, when Sobel wrote this book. Though Sobel relies heavily on our own timeline for major events in his world he weaves these events into a history that is not only believable, but left me wondering more about these events and their causes in our own world. The 'conclusion' of the book is very intreging for its 'interpretation.' This book is one of the few, if not the only, in the genre of historical alternate history, and there need to be more.

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