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The American Colonies: From Settlement to Independence by R. C. Simmons (194,000 words, 8 illustrations)

“[A] superior, wide-ranging text-book... Of the thirteen attractively-written chapters, six cover the period to 1713, four take the story to the end of the French and Indian War (the ‘neglected’ period is not neglected), and the last three deal with the crises that culminated in the Declaration of Independence. The focus is firmly on English-speaking, white people in the thirteen colonies, but blacks, Indians, the West Indies and Europeans and their colonies are skilfully introduced at the relevant points... the author has produced a tightly-written, comprehensive narrative (where necessary he points out the gaps in scholarship) that is smoothly blended with analysis, including undogmatic, judicious considerations of often controversial historiographical questions (further illuminated by a useful bibliography). The fine synthesis of recent scholarship and preoccupations is a major strength and alone should give the book wide readership and course adoption... Mr. Simmons... has written one of the best US colonial history texts.” — Wallace Brown,
Journal of American Studies

“Richard C. Simmons has written a textbook which... brings the burgeoning scholarship on early America under control and provides students with a graceful, rigorous introduction to American colonial history... this book presents a major problem in western history with integrity and assurance.” — Robert M. Calhoon,
The Journal of American History

The American Colonies is a triumph of condensation... This is a highly successful ‘updated narrative introduction to early American history’, of value to students in both the American and the British colonial fields.” — Ian R. Christie, The English Historical Review

The American Colonies is, in Professor Jack P. Greene’s words which appear on the dustcover, ‘an extraordinarily judicious and intelligent synthesis of a vast literature...;’ with his judgment I fully concur. Professor Simmons has succeeded in that most difficult part of the historian’s craft: the creation of a general but succinct narrative which provides a distinct thesis based upon the research of specialists.” — Sheldon A. Silverman, The Canadian Historical Review

The American Colonies is doubly welcome, for its lucidity and scholarship and for the manner in which it distils an enormous literature with clarity and insight. It will be indispensable for specialist and student alike... the author’s mastery of a vast literature (the bibliography is splendid) makes the work much more valuable than an ordinary textbook.” — A. C. Davies, The Economic History Review

“This book represents a considerable achievement which must be approached with respect and even awe... The writing is lively, the narrative line propelling, the organization balanced. R. C. Simmons has digested the recent scholarship and made it his own...
The American Colonies deserves to be widely read — and admired for its merits — both within and without the classroom.” — J. M. Bumsted, The William and Mary Quarterly

“Simmons has mastered the extensive literature of colonial American history and draws it together clearly, concisely and thoughtfully... probably the best place to begin the study of the American colonies.” — M. D. Kaplanoff,

“Simmons’ book is without a doubt a work of high academic rigor, intelligent, powerful and surprisingly clear in its rich content. This is a book every specialist or advanced student of American civilization cannot easily do without and to which he will constantly return.” — Christian Lerat,
Revue Française d’Études Américaines