I’ll say this frankly. I’ve never been much of a history buff. I do like a bit of history here and there, but an overloaded and overwhelming truck of historical information can drive me insane. Especially if the book contains more historical facts than fiction plots.
Below is the synopsis for the book by Goodreads.
When newlyweds Ethan and Epsey Pratt move from Philadelphia to a settlement in Georgia, they find themselves drawn into the war despite all their best efforts. Side by side with their Quaker neighbors Kindred and Mavis Morris, the Pratts are forced to take up arms against the British, as the world around them is bitterly changed forever.
With a discerning eye and a commitment to historical accuracy, Carter provides a unique view of the American Revolution by presenting lesser-known aspects of the conflict — including the shameful way everyone involved tried to manipulate and control the Indian tribes. Despite a huge cast of characters and an extremely detailed and complex narrative, Carter keeps the story rooted in the personalities of common folks faced with extraordinary difficulties. The Hornet’s Nest is a vivid, compelling, and original fiction debut from one of our most noted history makers.
The Hornet’s Nest by Jimmy Carter was an enthralling read. At first, that is. During the earlier chapters of the book, there had been signs of life. The livelihood of the Pratt family where the sole breadwinner was the shoemaker who had wanted his sons to follow in his footsteps and pick up the trade. Only Ethan Pratt was not interested in the trade and family business. The scene changes and soon, we follow Henry Pratt and his new wife as they move to North Carolina with Henry’s younger brother, Ethan Pratt, and his own wife.
But once I dug myself a hole so deep, I found myself unable to come out. I had not even reached the middle of the book when it began to take a life of its own. Suddenly the world around me exploded in the colours of the British Redcoats, the Florida Rangers led by Thomas Brown, and the homespun materials of the rebel militiamen led by Elijah Clarke. I believe this all started in Book Two. Yes, there are three sections to this one entire book.
Book One, which followed the lives of the Pratt family and their newfound neighbours, Kindred and Mavis Morris. Book Two kicked off with a frenzy of fists and firepower between the Whigs and the Tories. I can’t really imagine Book Three, but I believe there would be more fighting and eventually a loss and a victory somewhere.
I don’t have a side to pick because both sides have committed their share of crimes just to let it be known who the boss really is. I don’t condone Elijah Clarke’s way of talking down to his superiors, nor his attitude and actions. At the same time, Thomas Brown and his men were not supposed to touch the settlers living within the Quaker community, yet someone took matters into his own hands and murdered an innocent child within the vicinity of his own homestead. Despite the matter coming to light and reaching his ears, Brown did nothing to punish the man responsible. This brought forth more wars, battles, and the many prides and egos of men trying to prove who is better than the other.
I can tell when enough is enough, and I’m starting to tire of each side’s desperate attempt to outdo one another. The Redcoats had their share of spoils and victories, as well as losses while the militiamen under Clarke shared the same fate. Right now, I am only thumbing through and browsing the pages and scanning the lines to quickly find out what had really happened in the end. Just so I can move on to my next book, The Tea Planter’s Wife by Dinah Jefferies.
The book was perfectly fine at the start, but because of my growing discomfort at having to read and understand so many battle terms and historical facts, it eventually became a bore and a burden to actually read it properly.
Well, that’s just how I feel about it. I certainly won’t be surprised if I decided to stop reading it anyway and move on to the next one.
For better insights to the Revolutionary War, go to History.com for the entire write-up.