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Best Books on Revolutions

Unearth the dynamics of revolution through history's most enlightening texts. Ranked by the frequency of recommendations from scholarly sources and history book critics, these books provide insight into the forces that shape the world.

Recommendations from 24 articles, Barack Obama, Bill Gates, Elon Musk and 42 others.
Best Books on Revolutions
94 books on the list
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1776 book cover
David McCullough - 2006-06-27 (first published in 2005)
Goodreads Rating
Join General George Washington and his army on their intense journey towards American independence. In this powerful account, David McCullough captures the stories of Americans from all walks of life who fought for their noble ideals as well as the British commander and his disciplined redcoats. With extraordinary narrative, 1776 tells the story of two young American patriots, Nathaniel Green and Henry Knox, and the inexperienced but steadfast Washington, who had never before led an army in battle. Based on extensive research, this landmark work in American history is not to be missed.
Recommended by
Sean Junkins
A Tale of Two Cities book cover
A Tale of Two Cities
Charles Dickens - 2003-01-01 (first published in 1859)
Goodreads Rating
Experience the French Revolution through the eyes of several characters in this literary classic. Set in London and Paris, the novel depicts the struggle of the French peasantry against the oppressive aristocracy and the brutality demonstrated towards the former aristocrats in the early years of the revolution. With over 200 million copies sold, this historical masterpiece is a must-read for lovers of classic literature.
Animal Farm book cover
Animal Farm
George Orwell - 1996-04-01 (first published in 1945)
Goodreads Rating
Explore the dark world of totalitarianism, greed, and power struggles in this unforgettable classic. This brilliant satire takes a devastating aim at the corrupt and self-centered rulers of an imaginary state, highlighting the worst of human nature from selfishness to desperation. From comedy to tragedy, Animal Farm shows the breadth of the human experience and serves as a chillingly relevant warning on the dangers of unchecked power. Get ready to be captivated by this literary masterpiece.
The Radicalism of the American Revolution book cover
The Radicalism of the American Revolution
Gordon S. Wood - 1993-03-02 (first published in 1992)
Goodreads Rating
Immerse yourself in the synthesis of history, culture, politics, and economics as award-winning historian Gordon S. Wood describes the radical events that transformed feudal society into a democratic one during the American Revolution. This captivating read is more than just a break from England, it's the story of a revolution that baffled and sometimes disappointed its founding fathers.
Washington book cover
A Life
Ron Chernow - 2010-10-05
Goodreads Rating
Explore the life of the first president of the United States with a gripping, well-researched portrait by celebrated biographer Ron Chernow. From Washington's adventurous early years to his heroic exploits during the Revolutionary War and his presidency, this groundbreaking work shatters stereotypes and vividly brings to life a passionate man of fiery opinions and many moods. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Biography, it's been called the most comprehensive and balanced single-volume biography ever written about Washington. Perfect for history buffs and fans of Lin-Manuel Miranda's smash hit musical, Hamilton.
Citizens book cover
A Chronicle of the French Revolution
Simon Schama - 1990-03-17 (first published in 1989)
Goodreads Rating
Experience a captivating journey through Louis XVI's France with Citizens. Simon Schama presents a unique perspective of a country brimming with creativity and an obsession for innovation, rather than a dying regime. The book is a New York Times bestseller and features 200 stunning illustrations that add depth to this refreshing portrayal of history.
Angel in the Whirlwind book cover
Angel in the Whirlwind
The Triumph of the American Revolution (Simon & Schuster America Collection)
Benson Bobrick - 1998-07-01 (first published in 1997)
Goodreads Rating
Discover the epic story of the American Revolution in Angel in the Whirlwind. Follow the journey from tax protests to the triumphant Declaration of Independence and victory, as recounted by historian Benson Bobrick. Learn about the major battles, including Lexington and Concord, and the siege of Yorktown. Experience the social and political history behind the independence movement through the voices of lesser-known compatriots, both patriot and loyalist. With fresh insight and a captivating narrative, Angel in the Whirlwind brings to life the passion and glory of our nation's birth.
Patriots book cover
The Men Who Started the American Revolution
A. J. Langguth - 1989-03-15 (first published in 1988)
Goodreads Rating
Experience the American Revolution like never before with Patriots. This meticulously researched book brings to life the battles, treacheries, and dynamic personalities of the men who forged America's freedom. Discover the intellect, passion, and ambition of heroes like George Washington, John Adams, Samuel Adams, Ben Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, and Patrick Henry. From secret meetings of the Sons of Liberty to the final victory at Yorktown and the birth of Congress, Patriots vividly re-creates one of history's greatest eras.
Recommended by
Ben Shapiro
Founding Brothers book cover
Founding Brothers
The Revolutionary Generation
Joseph J. Ellis - 2000-01-01
Goodreads Rating
This book explores the intertwined lives of America's founding fathers, including John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Alexander Hamilton, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and George Washington. Author Joseph J. Ellis focuses on six key moments that shaped the nation, from Hamilton and Burr's deadly duel to Adams and Jefferson's final correspondence. With lively storytelling and a focus on personal character over institutional structure, Founding Brothers illustrates the unpredictable forces that have shaped American politics then and now.
Chains book cover
Laurie Halse Anderson - 2008-10-21
Goodreads Rating
This gripping novel follows thirteen-year-old Isabel as she fights for her freedom during the Revolutionary War. After a cruel twist of fate lands her and her sister in the hands of a malicious couple who have no sympathy for the American Revolution, Isabel meets a slave with ties to the Patriots who encourages her to spy on her owners. With impeccably researched historical details and a powerful story of the struggle for freedom, this novel shows the lengths we can go to cast off our chains, both physical and spiritual.
The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen
Paul Revere's Ride by David Hackett Fischer
Place of Greater Safety by Hilary Mantel
Twelve Who Ruled by R. R. Palmer
The Invasion of Virginia, 1781 by Michael Cecere
Liberty's Exiles by Maya Jasanoff
Revolutionary Mothers by Carol Berkin
Memoir of a Revolutionary Soldier by Joseph Plumb Martin
Johnny Tremain by Esther Hoskins Forbes
Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress by Dai Sijie
Long Walk to Freedom by Nelson Mandela
Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow
Blood in the Water by Heather Ann Thompson
The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet by Becky Chambers
Washington's Crossing by David Hackett Fischer
Benjamin Franklin by Walter Isaacson
Valiant Ambition by Nathaniel Philbrick
Love Warrior by Glennon Doyle
The Skinjacker Trilogy by Neal Shusterman
John Adams by David McCullough
Washington by James Thomas Flexner
Almost A Miracle by John Ferling
Bunker Hill by Nathaniel Philbrick
Monster, She Wrote by Lisa Kröger
American Scripture by Pauline Maier
Saratoga by Richard Ketchum
The Men Who Lost America by Andrew Jackson O'Shaughnessy
Washington's Secret War by Thomas Fleming
The Old Regime and the French Revolution by Alexis de Tocqueville
On Revolution by Hannah Arendt
Independence by John Ferling
Reporting the Revolutionary War by Todd Andrlik
With Zeal and With Bayonets Only by Matthew H. Spring
Decisive Day by Richard M. Ketchum
Igniting the American Revolution by Derek W. Beck
Founders by Ray Raphael
FORGOTTEN ALLIES by Joseph T. Glatthaar
British Soldiers, American War by Don N. Hagist
The War for America, 1775-1783 by Piers MacKesy
The Spirit of 74 by Ray Raphael
The Negro in the American Revolution by Benjamin Quarles
Paul Revere's Ride by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
The Perils of Peace by Thomas Fleming
The Glorious Cause by Robert Middlekauff
A History of the American Revolution by John R. Alden
Independence Lost by Kathleen Duval
The American Revolution in Indian Country by Colin G. Calloway
The Marketplace of Revolution by T. H. Breen
The Oxford History of the French Revolution by William Doyle
Black Patriots and Loyalists by Alan Gilbert
A Few Bloody Noses by Robert Harvey
George vs. George by Rosalyn Schanzer
Let It Begin Here! by Dennis Brindell Fradin
My Sister, the Serial Killer by Oyinkan Braithwaite
The Creation of the American Republic, 1776-1787 by Gordon S. Wood
The Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Orczy
Washington's Immortals by Patrick K. O'Donnell
Carry Me Home by Diane McWhorter
The Ideological Origins of the American Revolution by Bernard Bailyn
Guapa by Saleem Haddad
The Road to Guilford Courthouse by John Buchanan
The Road to Concord by J. L. Bell
Grand Forage 1778 by Todd W. Braisted
The Stamp Act Crisis by Edmund S. Morgan
A Devil of a Whipping by Lawrence E. Babits
Revolution on the Hudson by George C. Daughan
George Washington's Great Gamble by James Nelson
The Burning of His Majesty's Schooner Gaspee by Steven Park
Madame Tussaud by Michelle Moran
Fatal Purity by Ruth Scurr
The War Of American Independence by Don Higginbotham
American Sphinx by Joseph J. Ellis
The Death of Artemio Cruz by Carlos Fuentes
The American Revolution by Gordon S. Wood
John Adams vs Thomas Paine by Jett B. Conner
The Minutemen and Their World by Robert A. Gross
The Kingdom of This World by Alejo Carpentier
The Great Pretender by Susannah Cahalan
Burger's Daughter by Nadine Gordimer
City of Love and Ashes by Yusuf Idris
A Beginning at the End by Mike Chen
Revolutionary Summer by Joseph J. Ellis
Les Misérables by Victor Hugo
Liberty! by Lucille Recht Penner