Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Andersonville
Poignant, tender, and powerful, VALLEY FORGE brings into sharp new focus one of the most tensely dramatic episodes of the American Revolution.
With warmth and wit, compassion and sensitivity, MacKinlay Kantor evokes the flavor, pulse and texture of the last quarter of the eighteenth century, transporting the reader into the houses and workshops, kitchens and stables, parlors and bedrooms of ordinary citizens. Here are not only the soldiers of Valley Forge, but the panorama of the Revolution itself. George Washington, lamenting the remoteness and lack of valor in the Congress, anticipating new battle; the sprightly, good-humored Martha, always loyal and loving to a fault; the Marquis de Lafayette, whose poise and dignity belied his youth; Baron von Steuben whose halting English made the soldiers laugh, but whose fierce devotion won their respect. And the multitude—young Mum, a sixteen-year-old deserter savagely trampled by Tarleton's Raiders; Malachi Lennan whose gift of a horse gained him entry into Mad Anthony Wayne's Drovers; Billy, the turncoat, wailing for his mother as he was dragged to the gallows. Sons of farmers and tradesmen, trappers and teachers—some too young to fight, and some too old—surge through these pages, giving life, breath, scope and humanity to the American Revolution and the winter at Valley Forge.
MacKINLAY KANTOR was born in Webster City, Iowa in 1904. He began to write seriously at sixteen, became a newspaper reporter at seventeen, and an author at twenty-three. Since his first-published novel in 1928, more than forty books have appeared in print, including verse, short stories, novellas, histories, and books for children. His best-selling, and Pulitzer Prize- winning Andersonville was published in 1955. MacKinlay Kantor's other than book accomplishments range from Hollywood screenwriting to police patrolling (N. Y. P. D.), to combat experience (RAF and U.SAF) in two wars.
VALLEY FORGE is grandly conceived, but the quality is equal
to the concept. The climate of the war, its taste and
smell and the harsh texture of its life, are evoked
with mystery. Neither souped-up nor toned-down under
fashionable pressures, this is an extraordinarily honest
and human book. I am greatly impressed.
Praise for Valley Forge
VALLEY FORGE is history come alive. Mr. Kantor has conceived a pattern of vivid mosaics—some lyrical, some dramatic—which, taken as a whole, create a novel quite unlike any other. Even the style itself is original: the vernacular of the period rendered poetic. An astonishing achievement for which readers as well as literary prize-givers should be grateful.—Joseph Hayes author of The Desperate Hours and The Long Dark Night
Mack Kantor has taken a familiar story and retold it in the language of the time. He has breathed new life into it, and preserved the spirit of the times exceedingly well. Even well-known characters like Washington, Lafayette, Franklin and von Steuben are presented in a new light. He is to be congratulated for making it all seem so real.—Philip Van Doren Stern, author of The Drums of Morning and An End to Valor
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