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The Instant New York Times Besteller National Bestseller "[The] authors’ finest work to date." — Wall Street Journal The explosive true saga of the legendary figure Daniel Boone and the bloody struggle for America's frontier by two bestselling authors at the height of their writing power--Bob Drury and Tom Clavin. It is the mid-eighteenth century, and in the 13 colonies The Instant New York Times Besteller National Bestseller "[The] authors’ finest work to date." — Wall Street Journal The explosive true saga of the legendary figure Daniel Boone and the bloody struggle for America's frontier by two bestselling authors at the height of their writing power--Bob Drury and Tom Clavin. It is the mid-eighteenth century, and in the 13 colonies founded by Great Britain, anxious colonists desperate to conquer and settle North America’s “First Frontier” beyond the Appalachian Mountains commence a series of bloody battles. These violent conflicts are waged against the Native American tribes whose lands they covet, the French, and finally against the mother country itself in an American Revolution destined to reverberate around the world. This is the setting of Blood and Treasure, and the guide to this epic narrative is America’s first and arguably greatest pathfinder, Daniel Boone—not the coonskin cap-wearing caricature of popular culture but the flesh-and-blood frontiersman and Revolutionary War hero whose explorations into the forested frontier beyond the great mountains would become the stuff of legend. Now, thanks to painstaking research by two award-winning authors, the story of the brutal birth of the United States is told through the eyes of both the ordinary and larger-than-life men and women, white and red, who witnessed it. This fast-paced and fiery narrative, fueled by contemporary diaries and journals, newspaper reports, and eyewitness accounts, is a stirring chronicle of the conflict over America’s “First Frontier” that places the reader at the center of this remarkable epoch and its gripping tales of courage and sacrifice.


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The Instant New York Times Besteller National Bestseller "[The] authors’ finest work to date." — Wall Street Journal The explosive true saga of the legendary figure Daniel Boone and the bloody struggle for America's frontier by two bestselling authors at the height of their writing power--Bob Drury and Tom Clavin. It is the mid-eighteenth century, and in the 13 colonies The Instant New York Times Besteller National Bestseller "[The] authors’ finest work to date." — Wall Street Journal The explosive true saga of the legendary figure Daniel Boone and the bloody struggle for America's frontier by two bestselling authors at the height of their writing power--Bob Drury and Tom Clavin. It is the mid-eighteenth century, and in the 13 colonies founded by Great Britain, anxious colonists desperate to conquer and settle North America’s “First Frontier” beyond the Appalachian Mountains commence a series of bloody battles. These violent conflicts are waged against the Native American tribes whose lands they covet, the French, and finally against the mother country itself in an American Revolution destined to reverberate around the world. This is the setting of Blood and Treasure, and the guide to this epic narrative is America’s first and arguably greatest pathfinder, Daniel Boone—not the coonskin cap-wearing caricature of popular culture but the flesh-and-blood frontiersman and Revolutionary War hero whose explorations into the forested frontier beyond the great mountains would become the stuff of legend. Now, thanks to painstaking research by two award-winning authors, the story of the brutal birth of the United States is told through the eyes of both the ordinary and larger-than-life men and women, white and red, who witnessed it. This fast-paced and fiery narrative, fueled by contemporary diaries and journals, newspaper reports, and eyewitness accounts, is a stirring chronicle of the conflict over America’s “First Frontier” that places the reader at the center of this remarkable epoch and its gripping tales of courage and sacrifice.

30 review for Blood and Treasure: Daniel Boone and the Fight for America's First Frontier

  1. 5 out of 5

    PamG

    Blood and Treasure – Daniel Boone and the Fight for America’s First Frontier by Bob Drury and Tom Clavin is an extremely well written history and biography book. While it covers Daniel Boone’s life, it also covers the history and events of the times and shows where they intersect. The author brought a strong sense of time and place to the people and events in the book. It is not just a recitation of facts, but a story of the people and events. It draws the reader into Daniel Boone’s world. It Blood and Treasure – Daniel Boone and the Fight for America’s First Frontier by Bob Drury and Tom Clavin is an extremely well written history and biography book. While it covers Daniel Boone’s life, it also covers the history and events of the times and shows where they intersect. The author brought a strong sense of time and place to the people and events in the book. It is not just a recitation of facts, but a story of the people and events. It draws the reader into Daniel Boone’s world. It also doesn’t shy away from the grimmer aspects of life in the 1700’s and early 1800’s as well as some less than amazing aspects of Boone’s life. He was definitely an extraordinary pioneer that was a capable leader, hunter, and fighter with a work ethic he got from observing his parents. However, he was much more than this. He was fascinated by Native American culture, weapons, clothing, jewelry, and medicines from an early age. But he also struggled throughout his life with financial debt. His marriage to Rebecca Bryan was also fascinating. They both had to have a lot of patience and be slow to anger. The authors don’t shy away from the various wars that followed European immigrants coming to the New World. These had a severe detrimental effect on Native Americans resulting in loss of homelands, loss of hunting grounds, starvation, disease, loss of life through war, and other adverse effects on their culture. This is not the sanitized history and biography books that one often reads in school. It also debunks some of the legends about Daniel Boone. Men, women, and children were killed by the colonists, the British, the French, and the Native Americans; not just one or two of these. This book doesn’t gloss over the negative aspects of life or human activities and the atrocities that occurred. We need to learn what really occurred. It was interesting to read about the intertribal dynamics and how they changed over time. Additionally, communication and semantic misunderstandings often had grave consequences. The book’s timeline includes the French and Indian War and the Revolutionary War so the actions of several other famous people of the times are included. The prose was very readable and did not feel like so many dry nonfiction books. The writing style kept me engaged throughout. Overall, this book was well-written and well-researched. I learned a lot and want to read more by these authors. My only quibble is that there were no maps of the times included in the book. However, I was able to find some applicable maps online. Readers that like history and adventure may enjoy this book as much as I did. St. Martin’s Press, Bob Drury and Tom Clavin provided a complimentary digital ARC of this novel via NetGalley. This is my honest review. Opinions are mine alone and are not biased in any way. Publication date is currently set for April 20, 2021.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Liz

    This book about Daniel Boone starts off with the graphic killing of Boone’s son by the Indians. This nonfiction continued to keep my interest throughout. It does a masterful job of combining historic facts (battles, politics) with details about not only Boone’s life but several other well known figures (George Washington). This is one of those nonfiction books that reads almost like fiction. The authors give us both big and small pictures of the times and places. I loved seeing how decisions by This book about Daniel Boone starts off with the graphic killing of Boone’s son by the Indians. This nonfiction continued to keep my interest throughout. It does a masterful job of combining historic facts (battles, politics) with details about not only Boone’s life but several other well known figures (George Washington). This is one of those nonfiction books that reads almost like fiction. The authors give us both big and small pictures of the times and places. I loved seeing how decisions by the British made in England played out in the Yadkin Valley of what became North Carolina. I hadn’t a clue that a royal proclamation made in 1763 designed to stop a war with the Indians played into the start of the colonists’ unhappiness with England. This book doesn’t spare the reader from a lot of gruesome details. Indians and settlers alike killed, tortured and mutilated anyone they caught. I was unaware of the role the Indians played during the Revolutionary War and how they used the “civil war” among the whites, as they saw it, to attempt to take back their lands. And, of course,in the end, both English and Americans hung them out to dry. Drury and Calvin have a wealth of information, which allows for copious amounts of detail. My thanks to netgalley and St. Martin’s Press for an advance copy of this book.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Sheila

    Amazing. This is possibly the best history book I have read for a long time. Kudos to the authors for clear, concise, and engaging prose and substantial research. By the time I was only 25% of the way through the galley I had already learned a lot about the Native American tribes that existed in the 1700’s. I also learned a huge amount about the French and Indian Wars and how the French and British recruited Native American tribes to fight the colonists. The book focuses on Daniel Boone and conte Amazing. This is possibly the best history book I have read for a long time. Kudos to the authors for clear, concise, and engaging prose and substantial research. By the time I was only 25% of the way through the galley I had already learned a lot about the Native American tribes that existed in the 1700’s. I also learned a huge amount about the French and Indian Wars and how the French and British recruited Native American tribes to fight the colonists. The book focuses on Daniel Boone and contemporaneous events such as the Revolutionary War. Boone and his travel are placed in the center and events are explained around him. And not just events like treaties and wars. The context of his world is explained at each relevant point, including the vast numbers of beaver that lived in wild areas, the extensive range of the American Buffalo in the 1700’s, and the botany of certain areas. Boone lived from 1734 to 1820, so his life was a part of the infancy of the nation. Numerous colonists, Native Americans, British, and Canadians are profiled when they are introduced into the timeline. This adds important background for understanding the actions of people living at the time, and most importantly, Daniel Boone. The story ranges from the northeast in Pennsylvania, down to Virginia, North Carolina, Kentucky, and even the British Colonies of East Florida and West Florida. Exploration of the Illinois Territory and fighting there during the Revolutionary War is also covered. Emphasis is given to Boone’s search for and experiences in the Native Americans’ storied land of Kanta ke (Kentucky). In going into wild lands where Native Americans lived, he was captured at least 3 times, the last time with the result that he was adopted into the Shawnee tribe. Adoption could be a brutal process and happened to both white and black people. The narrative covers significant amounts of Native American history. I had no idea Potawotami and Chippewa Indians fought colonists on the British side. Large numbers of Shawnee, Delaware, and Mingo also fought on behalf of the British in the western territories. Also discussed are numerous brutal raids, battles, and skirmishes with what could be called atrocities or war crimes on both sides of the fence. The authors cite a statistic that during the entirety of the Revolutionary War, the mortality rate of colonists in the 13 Colonies was 1%, while that of “westerly” colonists settling west of the Appalachians was a staggering 7%. I had no idea so much of the Revolutionary War was fought far to the west of the 13 Colonies. This history is of particular interest to me since my family research has revealed that a portion of my father’s family lived in western Virginia, northwestern North Carolina, and northeastern Tennessee (not far from Kentucky), in the 1700s-1800s. I strongly recommend this book to anyone interested in Native American, Revolutionary War, or U.S. history in general. Thank you to authors Bob Drury and Tom Clavin, St. Martin’s Press, and NetGalley for allowing me to read such a fantastic book!

  4. 4 out of 5

    R

    This was an extensively research book centering around the life and times of Daniel Boone but in the same sense it also involved those other prominent and lesser known figures that were part of this historic time period. This included many Native Americans who fought to preserve their land and way of life. When learning about this time period, we were only afforded a glimpse into the past. However, with each chapter the authors provided in-depth accounts surrounding important events. It almost f This was an extensively research book centering around the life and times of Daniel Boone but in the same sense it also involved those other prominent and lesser known figures that were part of this historic time period. This included many Native Americans who fought to preserve their land and way of life. When learning about this time period, we were only afforded a glimpse into the past. However, with each chapter the authors provided in-depth accounts surrounding important events. It almost felt like watching a historical mini series-with each chapter bringing these events to life. Some of these detailed events were very heartbreakingly sad. The title, Blood and Treasure, was aptly named. An ARC was given for an honest review.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Rob

    This book was exactly what I was hoping for. Not only does it succeed as a concise, thorough, and meticulously researched account of the conquest of America's first frontier, it also manages to bring the people and events of this time and place exploding to life with colorful and surprisingly intimate details. The geography, history and storytelling are enough to earn this book 4 stars, but the true magic (and thus, 5 stars) comes from how it reveals the soul and character of the people that cre This book was exactly what I was hoping for. Not only does it succeed as a concise, thorough, and meticulously researched account of the conquest of America's first frontier, it also manages to bring the people and events of this time and place exploding to life with colorful and surprisingly intimate details. The geography, history and storytelling are enough to earn this book 4 stars, but the true magic (and thus, 5 stars) comes from how it reveals the soul and character of the people that created this chapter in U.S. history without any sort of political commentary. The authors let the facts speak for themselves and , in turn, reveal a picture of a nation that is deeply flawed at its core despite how badly it wants to think of itself as a superior model for the rest of the world. The truth is, this country will never be "great" until we come to grips with our horrific past and go through a genuine and authentic reckoning. We are simply not who we think we are...and, sadly, we never have been.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Jani Brooks

    America - Eighteenth Century America's early growing pains before the formation of a new republic was a time of exploration and movement for those who were anxious to escape the routines of life in cities and towns. Rumors of plenty of land, abundant game, and freedom from taxation and laws made plenty of men (and a few women) determined to live a life where they are in control. The stories from frontiersmen of the almost mythical Cumberland Gap, great rivers, and open lands to the west fascinate America - Eighteenth Century America's early growing pains before the formation of a new republic was a time of exploration and movement for those who were anxious to escape the routines of life in cities and towns. Rumors of plenty of land, abundant game, and freedom from taxation and laws made plenty of men (and a few women) determined to live a life where they are in control. The stories from frontiersmen of the almost mythical Cumberland Gap, great rivers, and open lands to the west fascinated many, including one independent man named Daniel Boone. Daniel was born to Squire and Sarah Boone in the wilds of Pennsylvania, the eldest son, and a wild "child" from birth. When he was supposed to be tending to the family's livestock, he, instead, was exploring the backcountry, studying the flora and fauna. His skill as a hunter soon became legendary as he supplied his family with all forms of wildlife. Daniel was also intrigued by the occasional visits of the local Native Americans, Delaware and Shawnee, who came to their township to trade. He took to copying their dress, and learning their medicinal practices. His independent streak would stay with him all of his life. With their Pennsylvania homeland getting too crowded, Squire Boone moved his family to North Carolina, opening up more land for Daniel to explore. It was his wanderlust that set Daniel and his family, including his wife Rebecca, to keep moving west as he grew into adulthood. As his own family grew, Daniel had to find ways to support them, so hunting and trapping became his life. But exploring was also high on his list of living life to the fullest. Unfortunately, it also meant leaving his family for months on end, and at one time he was gone for a year. When he returned from that trip, he was mildly stunned to discover that Rebecca, who thought he was dead, had delivered another baby while he was gone, and it certainly wasn't his. But Daniel, being Daniel, was forgiving and accepted the child as his own. The baby was, in fact, Daniel's own brother's! Times being what they were, the British and the French were at odds even thousands of miles from their own countries. When the French and Indian War began, Daniel joined the North Carolina militia, and was in several battles, including the Battle of Monongahela and the Battle of Fort Duquesne in which he had to fight Indians. It wouldn't be his last encounters with them. When Daniel kept hearing about a way to get west of the mountains through a pass, known as the Cumberland Gap, he set out with others to find it, with the help of an Irishman who felt that he knew the correct direction. It was obvious to Daniel and his men that the pathway was correct after finding that buffalo, elk, and probably humans traversed it. So, while Boone is the one who is given credit for discovering it, clearly Indians and possibly other white men had been there before. Boone's legendary life included his involvement with Lord Dunmore's War which was between settlers in Kentucky and Native Americans, and one the settlers won. He was later hired to survey land in Kentucky and he founded the colony of Boonsborough. While known for being a frontiersman, land surveyor, and fabled hunter, Daniel was lousy as a businessman. His land speculation kept him in perpetual debt. However, his reputation usually was helpful in getting work. When the War for Independence broke out, he served as a militia officer in Kentucky, where much of the fighting was with Indians. BLOOD AND TREASURE is quite a detailed read. Daniel Boone was a legend, but he was also just a man of his times. He owned slaves, he respected the Native Americans, but in the end, would be no kinder than most white men to them, and he had a terrible head for business, so his family suffered for that over and over again. What I enjoyed, in a sad way, the most about this book was the history of what the white people did to the Native Americans. Yes, the Indians responded by doing gruesome things to those they attacked, but they ultimately paid the bigger price of losing their lands, and their dignity Brilliantly written and impeccably researched, BLOOD AND TREASURE brings to light the amazing history of not only Daniel Boone, but how our fledgling country began its spread to the west.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Jena Henry

    “Daniel Boone was a man. Yes, a big man.” So begins the music for the popular TV show (from 50 plus years ago) “Daniel Boone.” The story of this big man is brought to life again in “Blood and Treasure” a historical biography by Bob Drury and Tom Clavin, that looks at Boone’s life through the resources of the past, and lens of current thinking. Subtitled, “the Fight for America's First Frontier”, this book is more than just facts and sources, it is an exciting presentation of the times surrounding “Daniel Boone was a man. Yes, a big man.” So begins the music for the popular TV show (from 50 plus years ago) “Daniel Boone.” The story of this big man is brought to life again in “Blood and Treasure” a historical biography by Bob Drury and Tom Clavin, that looks at Boone’s life through the resources of the past, and lens of current thinking. Subtitled, “the Fight for America's First Frontier”, this book is more than just facts and sources, it is an exciting presentation of the times surrounding and including the American Revolutionary War. Daniel Boone is known as a frontiersman and explorer. He was not book smart, but he was life smart. And he lived through and actively participated in amazing times- the French and Indian Wars and the Revolutionary War. He helped rediscover the Cumberland Gap and the “Warriors Path” and he established settlements in Kentucky- Boonesborough- and other places in the “New Frontier.” He rescued his daughter from an Indian kidnapping, and he himself was taken captive in Ohio. Despite his dangerous adventures, he lived to be 85 years old and was still “erect in form, strong in limb, unflinching in spirit.” This book, carefully written, is engaging- even the footnotes are fascinating. While the story of Boone is a highlight, the book also examines the events of the strife with the Indians as western expansion, and wars with the French, and British combined to create a time of danger, unrest, and cruelty. Many historical figures make an appearance in this book. (The authors explain their use of the word “Indian” because it was the term used during those times.) I noticed that in other reviews of this book, many readers could relate to this book because they had ancestors who had had followed in Daniels Boone’s path. Anyone who likes, history, and exciting adventures will enjoy Blood and Treasure. Thank you to authors Bob Drury and Tom Clavin, St. Martin’s Press, and NetGalley for an advance digital review copy. This is my honest review!

  8. 5 out of 5

    Jordan

    Drury and Clavin provide an intriguing and colorful study of the settling of America’s first western frontier through the lens of the life and times of Daniel Boone. This book does not dwell on Boone apart from his historical context, but examines the larger push westward from the pre-Revolutionary period and the French and Indian War up to Boone’s death in 1820. Examining this topic through the lens of Boone’s life allows for the introduction of human drama into the historical period (opening w Drury and Clavin provide an intriguing and colorful study of the settling of America’s first western frontier through the lens of the life and times of Daniel Boone. This book does not dwell on Boone apart from his historical context, but examines the larger push westward from the pre-Revolutionary period and the French and Indian War up to Boone’s death in 1820. Examining this topic through the lens of Boone’s life allows for the introduction of human drama into the historical period (opening with the murder of his son James). Boone is particularly relevant in this way given his lifelong fascination with Native American cultures and the land, both of which would be challenged and changed by the movement he represented. One strength is that the narrative helps to show the intersections and fluidity of frontier life in America. George Rogers Clark and George Washington are among those who appear in the course of Boone’s story. And while the Boone story if deeply connected with the settlement of Kentucky, it takes us from birth in Pennsylvania to death in Missouri – with frequent trips between North Carolina, Kentucky, Indiana and Virginia. The book ends with an examination of the claim that Boone’s legacy was an artificial product of mythologizing biographers and cultural products. The authors give a negative conclusion to this assessment based on their research. This book served as an opportunity for me to begin researching my own Boone ancestry.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Bonnye Reed

    I received a free electronic copy of this historical biography from Netgalley, Tom Clavin and Bob Drury, and St. Martin's Press. Thank you all for sharing your hard work with me. I have read Blood and Treasure, and this review reflects my honest opinion of this work. St. Martin's Press is bringing us more exacting, more exciting histories and biographies than I have seen previously. Thank you again for sharing. This is a must-read for history lovers. This is a special, intimate look back in time I received a free electronic copy of this historical biography from Netgalley, Tom Clavin and Bob Drury, and St. Martin's Press. Thank you all for sharing your hard work with me. I have read Blood and Treasure, and this review reflects my honest opinion of this work. St. Martin's Press is bringing us more exacting, more exciting histories and biographies than I have seen previously. Thank you again for sharing. This is a must-read for history lovers. This is a special, intimate look back in time that puts us right there, next to Daniel Boone as he works his way into the history of the United States. Whatever your historical interest, Blood and Treasure will catch your attention. This is not a story of coonskin hats and blunderbusses, but an intricate spotlight on life as it was in October 1773, beginning before our battles with England for independence, and carrying forward to the disastrous Battle of Blue Licks in August 1782. With Clavin and Drury, we go back to when the American West started at the peaks of the Alleghany Mountains and every inch of soil was paid for with blood and treasure. Pub date April 20, 2021 Reviewed on April 12, 2021, at Goodreads and Netgalley. Reviewed on April 20, 2021, at AmazonSmile, Barnes&Noble, BookBub, Kobo, and GooglePlay.

  10. 5 out of 5

    James

    BLOOD AND TREASURE by the writing team of Bob Drury and Tom Clavin balances readability and research perfectly. Fast-paced and thrilling at times, so much so that it's easy to overlook the depth of information presented about the land beyond the Appalachians and the people of Colonial America (and later the United States) who wished to populate it. I was struck by how intertwined some white settlers and hunters were with the Shawnee and other tribes they encounters and how quickly those relation BLOOD AND TREASURE by the writing team of Bob Drury and Tom Clavin balances readability and research perfectly. Fast-paced and thrilling at times, so much so that it's easy to overlook the depth of information presented about the land beyond the Appalachians and the people of Colonial America (and later the United States) who wished to populate it. I was struck by how intertwined some white settlers and hunters were with the Shawnee and other tribes they encounters and how quickly those relations descended into brutality and killing. Those readers interested in maintaining the vision of Daniel Boone as portrayed by Fess Parker on TV over half a century ago, might want to think about not reading this book. But the 'real' Daniel Boone has a lot to offer as well, and Drury and Clavin have so artfully placed him within the context of the early frontier that I'll never think of him the same again.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Patricia Romero

    The middle of the 1700s was full of uncertainty for the thirteen colonies that Great Britain has founded so far. There are so many different battles going on it’s no wonder everyone was a little anxious. Everyone wants to find a new frontier. And they are all willing to die for it. The Natives, the French, the Spanish, and of course our mother country. The conflicts were gruesome and cruel. Everyone was lying. Someone’s word meant nothing. The Natives were rightly upset and everyone wanted a piec The middle of the 1700s was full of uncertainty for the thirteen colonies that Great Britain has founded so far. There are so many different battles going on it’s no wonder everyone was a little anxious. Everyone wants to find a new frontier. And they are all willing to die for it. The Natives, the French, the Spanish, and of course our mother country. The conflicts were gruesome and cruel. Everyone was lying. Someone’s word meant nothing. The Natives were rightly upset and everyone wanted a piece of the country. And here is where we meet Daniel Boone. Well, actually my husband is a direct descendant of his sister, Elizabeth, so we thought we knew pretty much everything. We did not. The name Daniel Boone brings me immediately to the song. First off, he wasn’t a big man. He wasn’t at all like the movie and cartoon versions. He was a man with a passion for finding out what lay beyond the Appalachians. He wasn’t a fighting man, but he did his part for the revolution. It’s always dangerous to turn people from the past into larger than life characters and that has been done with Boone. It was a fast read and based on a lot of research. How did Boone become such a legend? He was seldom home, working as a trapper with a friend or his brother. They would be gone for long periods of time. He saw his fair share of suffering in his own household and they always seemed to be on the edge of financial ruin and yet Daniel did what he had to do to care for his family. Here you can read his story as told by many different people. The history of America is in this book and I am better for having read it. NetGalley/ April 20th, 2021 by St. Martin’s Press

  12. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

    Thanks to Netgalley for the ARC! Full disclosure-I’m not a huge nonfiction fan unless it’s something I am really interested in. Since I didn’t know much about Boone, I snagged this one. It was well-written and organized and researched. I really felt like I knew not only the man but the time period as well by the time I was finished. Although there were some graphic details concerning Indian and white relations, I still think a teen could get into this book. The footnotes weren’t overused and wer Thanks to Netgalley for the ARC! Full disclosure-I’m not a huge nonfiction fan unless it’s something I am really interested in. Since I didn’t know much about Boone, I snagged this one. It was well-written and organized and researched. I really felt like I knew not only the man but the time period as well by the time I was finished. Although there were some graphic details concerning Indian and white relations, I still think a teen could get into this book. The footnotes weren’t overused and were interesting (sometimes those take away from the basic reading, but these didn’t and were done well). You really get a feel for pioneer and Native American struggles of the time period while getting to know what an incredible life Boone led. I admit to getting a little bored at times when I got 3/4 through, but my attention was kept until then and definitely in the afterward info. I do recommend this one if you’re interested in the time period and/or the man who has become a legend.

  13. 5 out of 5

    H. P.

    Like most people, I have big holes in my knowledge of the world. Drury and Clavin helped me fill some of those holes with their new biography of Daniel Boone, Blood and Treasure. I can’t remember a time when I didn’t know who Daniel Boone was. But I’ve never read a book about Boone as an adult, and there is a lot I don’t know about southern Appalachia’s frontier history, even though it is my history. Drury and Clavin’s approach is perfect for me. I’m not a big biography reader. When I do read one Like most people, I have big holes in my knowledge of the world. Drury and Clavin helped me fill some of those holes with their new biography of Daniel Boone, Blood and Treasure. I can’t remember a time when I didn’t know who Daniel Boone was. But I’ve never read a book about Boone as an adult, and there is a lot I don’t know about southern Appalachia’s frontier history, even though it is my history. Drury and Clavin’s approach is perfect for me. I’m not a big biography reader. When I do read one, I prefer it devote ample page space to putting a person’s life into historical context. Drury and Clavin do that—there is an entire chapter devoted to the French and Indian War that elides Boone altogether. Ample page space given over to Boone’s time in the Yadkin Valley is equally welcomed by me, as a North Carolinian. History—good history at least—is hard in any circumstance. Daniel Boone presents particular difficulties. On one hand, there are centuries of mythmaking. On the other, there is a contemporary insistence that American expansion was an act of unmitigated and unreciprocated evil. The truth is much messier than either the triumphalist or revisionist narratives would have you believe. It’s hard to squeeze into any one narrative. History as written can be two-dimensional; history as it happened is always three-dimensional. Frontier history is always messy. The frontiersmen were cruel to the Indians, who were cruel to them (often first) and to each other. The political situation was more than complex, with the antagonisms among the French, British, American settlers, and various Indian tribes shifting constantly. Drury and Clavin know full well how foreign the violence perpetrated has become to us. They respond by shooting us straight. “To modern sensibilities it is difficult to absorb the savageries practiced by both sides of the conflict: the crawling and bawling white toddler found scalped amid the scorched remains of his parents; the captured Indians hung from trees with their severed p____es jammed into slit throats.” There is also the matter of balancing between taking care with the history and embracing the story. There is a pull to repeat a story too good to fact check. There is a countervailing pull to avoid making violence sexy. Drury and Clavin seem careful in their history. But they don’t shy away from telling many (and there are many) wild stories about Boone. Boone’s rescue of his kidnapped daughter did, after all, form the basis for The Last of the Mohicans. His escape from Indians and race to warn of their impending attack is as impressive as the Hugh Glass trek that inspired The Revenant, and better sourced historically. Boone didn’t think of himself as just a fighter and he wasn’t. “Daniel Boone had always despised, and would for the rest of his life, his outsize reputation as an Indian fighter. . . . He was vastly more proud of his ability to endure the burdens of a huntsman’s life with a seemingly preternatural stoicism.” Boone was a skilled fighter to be sure, especially when it came to the kind of irregular action that dominated on the frontier. He was an expert marksman. But he was a man of many skills. Able to survive and navigate in the back country for months at a time. Able to talk his way out of trouble with Indians as quick or quicker than fight his way out. Able to whip up a batch of homemade gunpowder. Able to “restock a rifle with a piece of raw timber” while on the run and use it to take down a small buffalo. Able to travel 160 miles across hard country in four days after escaping from Indians. Most of the narrative is devoted to Boone’s work in “Kanta-ke,” including frontier skirmishing during the American Revolution. A substantial early chunk of the book covers the French and Indian War. But I was pleased to see how much page space was devoted to Boone’s time in Yadkin Valley and the North Carolina highlands. And not just because I am a North Carolinian. That time is essential to understanding Boone as a man and not just as a myth. Boone had Quaker roots, but in many ways, he was a quintessential example of the Scots-English borderer who would dominate the American frontier. His family followed a traditional hillbilly route, first moving west deep into Pennsylvania, then south along the ridges all the way to the Yadkin Valley. Boone moving again into the mountains, then across them to Kentucky, wasn’t at all odd in a time and place where “it was not unusual for pioneer families to shift their homes six times or more in their lifetimes.” Boone hewed to the moral casualness of the hillbilly, not the Quaker. When he returned from a long hunt to discover that his brother had knocked up his wife, Boone readily forgave both and raised the girl as his own. Boone was most adept at the skills most valued by hillbillies and carried immense respect in frontier communities because of it, even if he clashed with more refined, wealthy interlopers from the east who thought they were owed deference. He was good with a rifle. I mean good. He could survive unsupported for months in the backcountry and move long distances through rough terrain at speed. He didn’t believe in honorable combat. He was quick to surrender to superior Indian forces and equally quick to escape. He respected the Indians as peers—it only made him a more effective Indian fighter. He didn’t worry much about legalities when it came to homesteading. Blood and Treasure isn’t perfect. I was surprised to see them describe the Battle of King’s Mountain as taking place “in the borderlands between the Carolinas and Tennessee.” It is well over a two-hour drive from Kings Mountain to the Tennessee border, even today. The similes employed by Drury and Clavin don’t always land (e.g., “The pang of betrayal stung the Shawnee like a copperhead’s strike.”). Still, though, it is finally written. The narrative raced along for me once I internalized the writing style and Drury and Clavin got into Boone’s adulthood. Drury and Clavin’s approach was just the kind of history writing I like, especially given I walked in with a weak background on Boone and on Appalachia’s time as America’s backcountry. It is a crunchy book full of interesting tidbits. I highlighted dozens of interesting passages in my Kindle copy, greatly slowing the writing on this review but a delight in their own right to scan back over. Disclosure: I received an advance review copy of Blood and Treasure.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Hobart

    ★ ★ ★ 1/2 (rounded up) This originally appeared at The Irresponsible Reader. --- WHAT'S BLOOD AND TREASURE ABOUT? It's pretty much in the subtitle—this book is about 2 things—Daniel Boone and the fight (literal and metaphoric) for America's first Frontier—with a focus on what we now know as Kentucky, but pretty much everything on the Western edge of the American colonies/states. It's not a biography of Boone (I'll tell you now, I wrongly expected this to be more of one), it's more like he's the organ ★ ★ ★ 1/2 (rounded up) This originally appeared at The Irresponsible Reader. --- WHAT'S BLOOD AND TREASURE ABOUT? It's pretty much in the subtitle—this book is about 2 things—Daniel Boone and the fight (literal and metaphoric) for America's first Frontier—with a focus on what we now know as Kentucky, but pretty much everything on the Western edge of the American colonies/states. It's not a biography of Boone (I'll tell you now, I wrongly expected this to be more of one), it's more like he's the organizing principle for the book, as we learn about Boone's roots, early life, and adulthood the authors talk about the conflicts with the Indians on the edge of white civilization's expanse. We'd get a chunk of a wide-view of history over a period, and then we'd focus on Boone's life around that time. Then the focus would widen a bit and we'd look at another period of time—and so on. Two significant ingredients in "the Fight" for the Frontier were what's called The French and Indian War and the American Revolution. There's the French and Indian War (and conflicts that led up to it and sprang from it) to begin with, paved the way for the latter conflicts—we see the pressure put on various tribes from the expansion of settlers, the resistance those settlers faced (from shifting alliances of Indians between themselves, and varying alliances between Western powers and the Indians). As for the Revolution—while most histories/documentaries/etc. about it will acknowledge the fighting in the South and West, few take any time to focus on it. Instead, we casual history readers just get repeated retellings of the stuff we learned in elementary school—Washington*, the Continent Army, Benedict Arnold, Nathan Hale, the Green Mountain Boys, and whatnot—and whatever expansions on some of those topics that Hamilton has taught us in the last few years. This book is a great corrective to that showing how the Indians were largely pawns for the British to use against the colonies, to distract from the larger skirmishes as well as to try to open up another front on the war—another way to steal power and influence from the colonies. You see very clearly how easily the entire War could've changed if not for a couple of significant losses suffered by the British and their Indian allies. * Washington is also featured pretty heavily in the earlier chapters, too—even if he maybe only briefly met Boone on one occasion. LANGUAGE CHOICES I know this sort of this is pretty customary, but I really appreciated the Note to Readers explaining the authors' language choices—starting with the tribal designations they used—the standard versions accepted today (there are enough various entities mentioned throughout that if they'd gone with contemporary names and spellings, I—and most readers—would've been very confused). At the same time, they did preserve the varied and non-standard spellings for just about everything else. For example, there were at least three variant spellings for Kentucky: Cantucky, Kanta-ke, and Kentucki (I think there was one more, but I can't find it). I was a little surprised that they stuck with the term "Indian" as much as they did—but their explanation for it seemed likely and understandable. AN IMAGE SHATTERED—OR MAYBE JUST CORRECTED Yes, I know that the Fess Parker TV show I saw after school in syndication was only very loosely based in reality. And that the handful of MG-targeted biographies I read several times around the same time were sanitized and very partial. Still, those are the images and notions about Boone that have filled my mind for decades. So reading all the ways they were wrong and/or incomplete threw me more than I'm comfortable with. His appearance was particularly jarring—the actual Boone eschewed coonskin caps because they were flat-topped and preferred a high-crowned felt hat to look taller. THat's wrong on so many levels. "Tall as a mountain was he" is about as far from the truth as you can get. The fact that he spent most of his life bouncing between comfort and/or wealth and massive debt is both a commentary on his strengths and weaknesses as it is the volatile times he lived in—he lost so much thanks to colonial governments being mercurial. It was reassuring to see the repeated insistence that he was an honest man, who worked to repay his debts even if it took too long. In the end, Boone seemed to be a good guy trying his best to get by and provide for his family—who accidentally stepped into some degree of celebrity, that magnified some good qualities and replaced the man with a legend. SO, WHAT DID I THINK ABOUT BLOOD AND TREASURE? The writing itself? There are moments that were fantastic. On the whole...., but from time to time, when Drury and Clavin wanted to drive an image or description home, they could be stunning. I would have preferred things to be a bit more even—a bit more balanced and consistent on that front. But the topic and scope didn't really allow for that. So I'll just enjoy those moments of it that I got. As for the book as a whole? It was impressive, entertaining (generally), and informative. When it was at its best, it didn't feel like reading dry history but a compelling look at that portion of US History. At its worst, it was a litany of names, dates, and ideas that didn't do much for me. Thankfully, those moments were few and far between. It's not a difficult read at any point, just pretty dry on occasion. There are so many other things I'd like to have mentioned or discussed—but it would make this post unwieldy. The notes about hunting (both the good and the horrible), Boone's heroics, his character, and family; various aspects of the Indian customs discussed and so much. There's just so much in this book to chew on that I can't sum it up. I liked this—I liked it enough to look at a few other books by this duo to see what they can do with other topics, people, and eras. I think anyone with a modicum of interest in Boone will enjoy this and be glad for the experience. Disclaimer: I received this eARC from St. Martin's Press via NetGalley in exchange for this post—thanks to both for this.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Tom Mathews

    In my youth Daniel Boone was a hot commodity, as were Lewis and Clark, Crockett, Custer, Carson, and a long list of other figures whose lives made America’s dream of manifest destiny a reality. At my young age, Boone’s adventures in opening the wilderness were a thrill, but that is all they were, adventures. The authors of the books I read back then did little to provide context to his deeds. Over the years, America’s attitudes towards its interactions with native Americans underwent a quantum s In my youth Daniel Boone was a hot commodity, as were Lewis and Clark, Crockett, Custer, Carson, and a long list of other figures whose lives made America’s dream of manifest destiny a reality. At my young age, Boone’s adventures in opening the wilderness were a thrill, but that is all they were, adventures. The authors of the books I read back then did little to provide context to his deeds. Over the years, America’s attitudes towards its interactions with native Americans underwent a quantum shift. The publication of books such as Dee Brown’s Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee: An Indian History of the American West changed our view from that of Indian wars to genocidal extermination. In the final decades of the twentieth century the heroic luster of early American explorers and pioneers tarnished in the face of unrelenting condemnation to the point where my daughters, both in their twenties, had never heard of Daniel Boone before today. Fortunately, the new millennium has brought us a new generation of historians whose interests lie more in telling an accurate, unbiased story than in glorifying one side or the other. Authors such as Nathaniel Philbrick and Erik Larson have made careers out of taking all we think we know about famous people and events and turning it on its head by the simple expedient of telling the unvarnished truth. High on this list of authors are Bob Drury and Tom Clavin who have cowritten books spanning U.S. history from Valley Forge to Vietnam, including a biography of Oglala Sioux Chief Red Cloud. Their newest book, Blood and Treasure, relates the events surrounding Daniel Boone’s settlement of Kentucky and his role in the American Revolutionary War. It has been fifty years since I last read a book about him. Back then, books told the story of Daniel Boone, the legend. Now, I finally get a chance to learn about Daniel Boone, the man. It is not a ‘warts and all’ exposé aimed at trashing his reputation, but a skillfully researched account of his life provided in the context of the times in which he lived. Many of the more memorable stories of him are about Boone the Indian fighter, his close calls and escapes, but they leave out the fact that these events were part of a larger war. During the Revolution, the British actively recruited warriors from numerous tribes to make war on the American settlers. By opening up a western front, they hoped to pull men and resources away from George Washington’s army and thereby end the war. To this end, the British Army offered bounties for American scalps. When the Shawnee and several other tribes besieged Boonesborough in 1778 they were accompanied by forty to fifty British and and Canadians and fought under the Union Jack. Had the siege succeeded, they could have easily taken several smaller settlements and “flank the coastal revolutionaries from the rear, forcing Washington’s Continental Army to defend two fronts. Gen. Cornwallis was already planning to open a southern theater, and it is easy to imagine he and Hamilton crushing the southern rebels between them”. In the Shawnees’ defense, The British were offering them the one thing that their survival depended on, all the land west of the Alleghenies and laws prohibiting white settlements in Indian lands. Stamp Acts and ‘taxation without representation’ be damned. This vast expanse of unsettled land is what the war was all about. Bottom line: Drury and Clavin penned an amazing book that revisits a history that has been all but forgotten. As a genealogist, I appreciate the tremendous amount of research that went into it. I highly recommend this book. *Quotations are cited from an advanced reading copy and may not be the same as appears in the final published edition. The review was based on an advanced reading copy obtained at no cost from the publisher in exchange for an unbiased review. While this does take any ‘not worth what I paid for it’ statements out of my review, it otherwise has no impact on the content of my review. FYI: On a 5-point scale I assign stars based on my assessment of what the book needs in the way of improvements: *5 Stars – Nothing at all. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. *4 Stars – It could stand for a few tweaks here and there but it’s pretty good as it is. *3 Stars – A solid C grade. Some serious rewriting would be needed in order for this book to be considered great or memorable. *2 Stars – This book needs a lot of work. A good start would be to change the plot, the character development, the writing style and the ending. *1 Star – The only thing that would improve this book is a good bonfire.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Bookreporter.com Biography & Memoir

    The biographer has one main advantage and one main disadvantage. The advantage is perspective: you have a fuller understanding of your subject’s story and their times than they themselves ever had. You can know things about them that they never knew about themselves. The disadvantage is that you can’t fully share the subject’s perspective, understand how their thinking developed, what influenced their worldview and how they made decisions. You can approach their thinking by reading what they wro The biographer has one main advantage and one main disadvantage. The advantage is perspective: you have a fuller understanding of your subject’s story and their times than they themselves ever had. You can know things about them that they never knew about themselves. The disadvantage is that you can’t fully share the subject’s perspective, understand how their thinking developed, what influenced their worldview and how they made decisions. You can approach their thinking by reading what they wrote about themselves and inferring their motivations, but you can’t always grasp what was going on inside their heads. One of the ways to deal with this drawback, especially the farther back you go from the present, is to do what you can to explain the circumstances and factors that shaped the subject and their worldview. In telling the story of Daniel Boone, biographers Bob Drury and Tom Clavin must tell the story of the frontier in the late colonial and revolutionary period, which usually gets filed in the American imagination as “the French and Indian Wars” and quickly forgotten. Drury and Clavin set the stage for young Daniel Boone’s wandering, and for his key role in the expansion of the frontier, by examining what was taking place around him --- the importance of the river transportation network, the formidable barrier of the Appalachians, the rivalries of the Native American tribes, and the power politics of the European colonizers. Boone follows George Washington in a doomed English incursion in the area near present-day Pittsburgh and comes away with a disdain for the British leadership. But he also hears the rumors about Kentucky, which at the time was a contested borderland between rival tribes; its plentiful natural resources and game simultaneously made Kentucky ripe for white settlement. Boone was a “market hunter” in his youth, killing and skinning deer to bring their prized hides to market. Drury and Clavin explain that this is where the term “buck” comes from since deer hides were as good as currency. Because this area of history is so often neglected, it’s extremely helpful that the authors pause in telling Boone’s story to provide the missing perspective. Many factors went into Boone’s decision to move across the Cumberland Gap into Kentucky aside from mere wanderlust and commercial exploitation --- the decimation of the Native American tribes by smallpox, the expanding colonial population, and the emerging independent spirit of the colonists. This is especially helpful in terms of the focus placed on the tribes that were ultimately displaced and dispossessed by Boone and the settlers who came after him. BLOOD AND TREASURE is clear about the human cost of American expansion beyond the Appalachians, portraying Boone not so much as a heroic pioneer but as one of many participants in what turned out to be an unequal struggle. The history of the frontier, from the Cumberland Gap to Sutter’s Mill to the Oklahoma Land Rush, has always been wreathed in fable. Drury and Clavin, to their credit, aren’t in the mythmaking business and present Daniel Boone as a player in a larger theater rather than a protean force of nature. BLOOD AND TREASURE highlights an oft-forgotten stage of American history and does it --- and its subject --- justice. Reviewed by Curtis Edmonds

  17. 5 out of 5

    Sheila

    Amazing. This is possibly the best history book I have read for a long time. Kudos to the authors for clear, concise, and engaging prose and substantial research. By the time I was only 25% of the way through the galley I had already learned a lot about the Native American tribes that existed in the 1700’s. I also learned a huge amount about the French and Indian Wars and how the French and British recruited Native American tribes to fight the colonists. The book focuses on Daniel Boone and conte Amazing. This is possibly the best history book I have read for a long time. Kudos to the authors for clear, concise, and engaging prose and substantial research. By the time I was only 25% of the way through the galley I had already learned a lot about the Native American tribes that existed in the 1700’s. I also learned a huge amount about the French and Indian Wars and how the French and British recruited Native American tribes to fight the colonists. The book focuses on Daniel Boone and contemporaneous events such as the Revolutionary War. Boone and his travel are placed in the center and events are explained around him. And not just events like treaties and wars. The context of his world is explained at each relevant point, including the vast numbers of beaver that lived in wild areas, the extensive range of the American Buffalo in the 1700’s, and the botany of certain areas. Boone lived from 1734 to 1820, so his life was a part of the infancy of the nation. Numerous colonists, Native Americans, British, and Canadians are profiled when they are introduced into the timeline. This adds important background for understanding the actions of people living at the time, and most importantly, Daniel Boone. The story ranges from the northeast in Pennsylvania, down to Virginia, North Carolina, Kentucky, and even the British Colonies of East Florida and West Florida. Exploration of the Illinois Territory and fighting there during the Revolutionary War is also covered. Emphasis is given to Boone’s search for and experiences in the Native Americans’ storied land of Kanta ke (Kentucky). In going into wild lands where Native Americans lived, he was captured at least 3 times, the last time with the result that he was adopted into the Shawnee tribe. Adoption could be a brutal process and happened to both white and black people. The narrative covers significant amounts of Native American history. I had no idea Potawotami and Chippewa Indians fought colonists on the British side. Large numbers of Shawnee, Delaware, and Mingo also fought on behalf of the British in the western territories. Also discussed are numerous brutal raids, battles, and skirmishes with what could be called atrocities or war crimes on both sides of the fence. The authors cite a statistic that during the entirety of the Revolutionary War, the mortality rate of colonists in the 13 Colonies was 1%, while that of “westerly” colonists settling west of the Appalachians was a staggering 7%. I had no idea so much of the Revolutionary War was fought far to the west of the 13 Colonies. This history is of particular interest to me since my family research has revealed that a portion of my father’s family lived in western Virginia, northwestern North Carolina, and northeastern Tennessee (not far from Kentucky), in the 1700s-1800s. I strongly recommend this book to anyone interested in Native American, Revolutionary War, or U.S. history in general. Thank you to authors Bob Drury and Tom Clavin, St. Martin’s Press, and NetGalley for allowing me to read such a fantastic book!

  18. 5 out of 5

    James (JD) Dittes

    Looking back on his life with his biographer, John Filson, Boone remarked on the “blood and treasure” spent to secure Kentucky for American settlement. He lost two sons to Indian attacks. His family had fled Boonesborough after his 1778 kidnapping by the Shawnee--and his wife’s family “did not bother to hide their loyalist feelings,” even as he languished in captivity. But there was more blood and treasure lost than kith and kin for the Boone family, and Drury and Clavin really bring the frontier Looking back on his life with his biographer, John Filson, Boone remarked on the “blood and treasure” spent to secure Kentucky for American settlement. He lost two sons to Indian attacks. His family had fled Boonesborough after his 1778 kidnapping by the Shawnee--and his wife’s family “did not bother to hide their loyalist feelings,” even as he languished in captivity. But there was more blood and treasure lost than kith and kin for the Boone family, and Drury and Clavin really bring the frontier of the Revolutionary War Era to life in this vividly written history. The land of "Kenta-ke," named by the Iroquois for its "many meadows" was an intertribal park, stretching from the Cumberland River in the south (along which Nashville, Tennessee, lies today) and the Ohio River in the north. It was a preserved land with no permanent settlements. And the bands of hunting Shawnee, Cherokee, and Chickasaw, met in peace on this land--despite many other armed conflicts throughout the years. Boone entered the region first as a long hunter, taking his share of the abundant bison and beaver, along with many other colonists. But when Boone found the Cumberland Gap--a pass in the Appalachain Moutain Chain where the states of Kentucky, Tennessee, and Virginia all meet--Kenta-ke was ripe for settlement, and the settlement of Boonesborough was the result. As Boone, his family, and settlers from North Carolina, crossed the mountains to settle in the intertribal game park, the Revolutionary War burst to life in faraway Lexington, Massachusetts. The most interesting parts of this book are found when Drury and Clavin show Boone's travails in Kentucky in the context of the greater war. Shawnee attacks were swift in response to settlement on their historic hunting lands, but the Shawnee and Boones also allowed themselves to become pawns in the greater fight between Britain (which armed and supported the Indians, promising to keep the Appalachians as the fixed border between Indian and colonial lands) and the Colonies, which were fighting, in part, to gain access to the riches of trans-Appalachia. Growing up in the Ohio Valley, I have heard tales of Boone throughout my life--the kidnapping of his daughter, for example, and his time as an adopted son of the Shawnee chief, Blackfish. But Kentucky was a part of a much larger conflict, even as Boone's "blood and treasure" would one day make it a part of a much greater nation. I grew up in the Ohio Valley. I live in the Cumberland Valley. There is much history between them, and this book really captures it. Special thanks to NetGalley for the preview in exchange for an honest review.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Christina Dudley

    This was a fascinating and sometimes even exciting book about Daniel Boone and the way Kentucky was fought over and "settled," as well as how changing allegiances with various Native American tribes impacted both the French and Indian War and American Revolution. Frankly, apart from reading Last of the Mohicans and Arundel, I knew just about zip on the subject. Now I know that Fenimore Cooper lifted ideas from Boone's life and gave many of his characteristics to Natty Bumpo! As with any book disc This was a fascinating and sometimes even exciting book about Daniel Boone and the way Kentucky was fought over and "settled," as well as how changing allegiances with various Native American tribes impacted both the French and Indian War and American Revolution. Frankly, apart from reading Last of the Mohicans and Arundel, I knew just about zip on the subject. Now I know that Fenimore Cooper lifted ideas from Boone's life and gave many of his characteristics to Natty Bumpo! As with any book discussing the fate of Native Americans when they came in conflict with settlers, there are equal parts heartbreak and atrocity (on both sides). Ever since Homo Sapiens overran the Neanderthals, the question of who gets to live where has always been settled by violence, and Kentucky is no exception. Amazing to think the same story was repeated, with variations, over and over across the continent, and even into the 1860s the bloodshed continued. I knew nothing of the Shawnee before reading this book, and if I ever get around to that cross-country road trip, there are plenty of sites mentioned here that I'd love to add. Thank you to the publisher for the opportunity to read this e-galley. I'm hoping it gets a good copyedit because there are many errors (missing words, wrong words, grammatical issues) that interrupt the flow. Here are a few: Loc 212: "taught" should be "taut" Loc 919: Beginning with "In the meanwhile, Rebecca--" this is not a complete sentence. Loc 1005: Missing a verb: "Within thirty minutes some 50 white bodies of all ages and genders lay splayed across the ground while the survivors _________ the surrounding forest." Loc 1149: "it's" should be "its" -- "it's untrammeled location" Loc 1829: "He ordered Boone to lead he and his party" should be "him and his party" Loc 1986: "Indian-Illinois border" should be "Indiana-Illinois border" Loc 2076: "did not deter he and his brother" should be "did not deter him or his brother" Loc 2350: period missing after "governor's call to arms" Loc 2553: "budding discord between he and Boone" should be "budding discord between him and Boone" Loc 2634: "Their orty or so pack horses" should be "Their forty or so pack horses" Loc 2748: "investors" is spelled "invbestors" Loc 3978: "it's only shot" should be "its only shot"

  20. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer Lara

    Blood and Treasure by Bob Drury and Tom Clavin focuses on Daniel Boone and his role in the fight for America’s first frontier. In the mid-18th century, the drive to conquer and settle the area beyond the Appalachian Mountains, North America’s “first frontier.” That drive would commence a series of bloody battles against the Native American tribes, the French and lastly British as the fight for independence intensifies. Drury and Clavin provide an epic narrative of Daniel Boone, as America’s firs Blood and Treasure by Bob Drury and Tom Clavin focuses on Daniel Boone and his role in the fight for America’s first frontier. In the mid-18th century, the drive to conquer and settle the area beyond the Appalachian Mountains, North America’s “first frontier.” That drive would commence a series of bloody battles against the Native American tribes, the French and lastly British as the fight for independence intensifies. Drury and Clavin provide an epic narrative of Daniel Boone, as America’s first and great pathfinder, whose explorations would become legend, while tearing down the coonskin cap-wearing caricature that many Americans are familiar with. Blood and Treasure is more than just Daniel Boone’s story. It is the story of the ordinary and the extraordinary men and women, colonists and Native, who witnessed the road that led to the birth of the United States. The reader is placed in the middle of America's first frontier and the tales of courage and sacrifice that occurred there. I have been interested in Daniel Boone’s story ever since I discovered that his older sister, Sarah Boone Wilcoxson (1724-1815) is my 14th great grandmother on my paternal grandfather’s side. I dived into Blood and Treasure as I was eager to learn more about the man and how he became a legend. It is evident that Drury and Clavin painstakingly researched the story of Daniel Boone and the events surrounding his life. Boone was a man born with wanderlust and the perfect individual to explore the unexplored. While the information seemed overwhelming, and it took me a few days as I carefully read, Drury and Clavin are able to take a complicated history and provide a fast-paced, fiery narrative and honest depiction of the frontier. What I liked about the book is, while the main focus is on Daniel Boone, his contemporaries were allowed to have a voice and help provide a bigger picture of the events than just through Boone’s own recollections. Blood and Treasure provides a clearer picture of who these men and women really were, the good, the bad and the ugly, and not the just pedestal heroes that we have been led to know. I highly recommend Blood and Treasure. Blood and Treasure is available in hardcover, eBook, and audiobook.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Brittany

    Wow, I absolutely loved this book! This was my first book on Daniel Boone, and it did not disappoint. I will definitely be picking up more books by this team in the future. Structure and Formatting 5/5 This book starts out with a bang, highlighting a pivotal moment for Daniel Boone in his later life, and then starts back at the beginning to see how we got there. While I don't typically like flashback/flash forwards in my nonfiction book, it just worked for me here. It effectively grabbed my atten Wow, I absolutely loved this book! This was my first book on Daniel Boone, and it did not disappoint. I will definitely be picking up more books by this team in the future. Structure and Formatting 5/5 This book starts out with a bang, highlighting a pivotal moment for Daniel Boone in his later life, and then starts back at the beginning to see how we got there. While I don't typically like flashback/flash forwards in my nonfiction book, it just worked for me here. It effectively grabbed my attention and made me want to keep reading to get back to the action of the opening scene. The chapters were fairly bite-sized, which I tend to like in my nonfiction as well since it gives more pauses for processing than books with longer chapters. Thoroughness of Research 5/5 Like I said, this was my first book on Daniel Boone, but I have a good sense of who has already covered him in other books. Who are the legendary story collectors, who are the biographers... this did a great job of hyping up some books already on my TBR while adding a few more to my list. Storytelling/Writing 5/5 This is a page-turner. Action-packed and fast paced, the short chapters and writing devices typically found in fiction help to drive this story forward. This is a bingeable book, which I can attest to since I managed to read this in one day picking it up any chance I got before and after work. 😅 Level of Enjoyment 5/5 This was such a good one! Once I saw there was a chapter (chapter 3) entitled "Long Hunters," I was even more excited to continue on since my ancestor Charles Skaggs was a long hunter. I wanted to learn about him and his life. While he did not appear in the book, I took the descriptions given of long hunters in general and thought about them in relation to him and his life and family. It definitely made this book feel more personal and fun while reading. Prior Knowledge Needed 5/5 You can go into this knowing absolutely nothing about Daniel Boone, the colonial wars, the French and Indian War, or the Revolution and still enjoy this. I would say my knowledge of the French and Indian War and Revolution enhanced my experience of this book since I already knew the "characters" being mentioned, but this is written in a way that even people unfamiliar with those events will be able to enjoy and understand the book.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Debra Pawlak

    I received an advance reading copy (arc) of this book from NetGalley.com in return for a fair review. This book details the life of the legendary Daniel Boone. As a boomer, when I think of Daniel Boone, Fess Parker and his coonskin cap immediately come to mind, along with a sense of great adventure. In reality, Boone stood about 5 foot 8 and he didn't wear a coonskin cap, but the great adventure part certainly rings true. Boone was, at heart, a long hunter, which meant he left home and lived for I received an advance reading copy (arc) of this book from NetGalley.com in return for a fair review. This book details the life of the legendary Daniel Boone. As a boomer, when I think of Daniel Boone, Fess Parker and his coonskin cap immediately come to mind, along with a sense of great adventure. In reality, Boone stood about 5 foot 8 and he didn't wear a coonskin cap, but the great adventure part certainly rings true. Boone was, at heart, a long hunter, which meant he left home and lived for months at a time in the wild scouting new areas and fur trapping when he wasn't shooting big game. But this book isn't just about Boone although the story centers on him. This book brings to life what it was like during the 1700s when settlers headed west at the same time George Washington was fighting the British. Back then, 'west' was Kentucky where Boone eventually settled. In between wrangling with Indians, (the term used in the book), defending his territory, and keeping his family together and safe, Boone was a man of his word. At times, he seemed fearless, and he had a knack for sensing trouble, but he always made shrewd decisions in the face of adversity. You could almost hear the drums and war cries as the Indians and the white men fought over the land. Both sides committed horrific atrocities that were hard to read about. Authors Drury and Clavin did an excellent job researching these Indian wars and explaining what happened from both viewpoints. My only complaint about this book was the very end. Instead of telling us about Boone's death and burial, the authors penned a commentary about how the war between the Indians and the white men continue. It seemed they used the book to make a political point instead of wrapping up Boone's amazing storyline. That was the difference between four and five stars for me.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Rachel

    Blood and Treasure by Bob Drury and Tom Clavin is an awesome book that delves into the history of Daniel Boone, the expansion into the lands of the western frontier, the beginnings of the Revolutionary War, and so much more. It was gripping from beginning to end. I know this is a nonfiction book, however the smooth way that the prose was written and how well the narrative unfolded at times made it all seem so exciting and flawless as if I was reading a fictional account. I learned so much more ab Blood and Treasure by Bob Drury and Tom Clavin is an awesome book that delves into the history of Daniel Boone, the expansion into the lands of the western frontier, the beginnings of the Revolutionary War, and so much more. It was gripping from beginning to end. I know this is a nonfiction book, however the smooth way that the prose was written and how well the narrative unfolded at times made it all seem so exciting and flawless as if I was reading a fictional account. I learned so much more about Daniel, different viewpoints from the colonists, the Native Americans, British citizens, and events that are a part of our American history that I truly could not appreciate when it was first presented to me in middle school. Now as an adult, I see and understand things differently. Is our past as a nation unblemished and perfect? Nope. We were flawed in many ways, and definitely were in the wrong in several ways on our quest for our own independence and should have done many things differently, but that isn’t what happened. We need to learn what really occurred, why, what was right and wrong despite the century differences, and how we can modify things for the future (if applicable). I really enjoyed learning so much more about Daniel Boone then I could have ever imagined. He is a fascinating and complex figure that is an integral part of our nation’s history. 5/5 stars Thank you NG and St. Martin’s Press for this arc and in return I am submitting my unbiased and voluntary review and opinion. I am posting this review to my GR and Bookbub accounts immediately and will post it to my Amazon, Instagram, and B&N accounts upon publication on 4/20/21.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Dennis

    I would like to thank NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for providing me an ARC for this title. As a long-time history student, I was interested in this book as soon as I heard of its upcoming publication. I have read a lot of early American history books, but the only ones that make my bookshelf are the ones like BLOOD AND TREASURE. First, what it is not: (1) It is NOT an elementary narrative of just Daniel Boone; (2) It is NOT a boring recitation of details and facts lacking any human elements; I would like to thank NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for providing me an ARC for this title. As a long-time history student, I was interested in this book as soon as I heard of its upcoming publication. I have read a lot of early American history books, but the only ones that make my bookshelf are the ones like BLOOD AND TREASURE. First, what it is not: (1) It is NOT an elementary narrative of just Daniel Boone; (2) It is NOT a boring recitation of details and facts lacking any human elements; and (3) It is NOT 1,000 pages long. Second, what it is: (1) It IS a “man and his times” story, allowing the reader to know what was happening politically & culturally before, during, and after each of Boone’s adventures; (2) It IS a great story that captures the reader in Boone’s world; and it IS only a little over 400 pages, including notes and bibliography. The only criticism that I have is related to the scarcity of relevant maps. Any book that covers a large area and continually involves battles and troop movements should provide a framework of geographical reference. This increases the sense of reality to the narrative, and relates it to the cities, hills, valleys, and paths still surviving today. There is no doubt that Daniel Boone was an extraordinary pioneer in a very dangerous age. He was a great leader, adventurer, fighter, and hero to many people in the swiftly growing western expansion of the late 1700s. Blood and Treasure is exactly the type of book he deserves. It is also the kind of book all of us (both amateur and professional historians) can enjoy and keep on our shelves to share with others.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Anne Morgan

    This is the story of young America, through the Revolutionary War, that I haven't read much about. The story of the West, and how early settlers eager for the less crowded lands west of central Virginia followed rumors and Daniel Boone into what is now Kentucky. Focusing the story through Boone's experience helps to anchor the book, although Drury and Clavin do expand the focus occasionally to show us what is happening in other parts of the country at the same time. "Blood and Treasure" is caref This is the story of young America, through the Revolutionary War, that I haven't read much about. The story of the West, and how early settlers eager for the less crowded lands west of central Virginia followed rumors and Daniel Boone into what is now Kentucky. Focusing the story through Boone's experience helps to anchor the book, although Drury and Clavin do expand the focus occasionally to show us what is happening in other parts of the country at the same time. "Blood and Treasure" is carefully researched but written more like a fast-paced novel than a slow, fact-filled non-fiction tome. Life on the frontier was incredibly hard and the reader isn't spared from how violent and tragic life can be. Knowing basically nothing about Boone, I found this an interesting story about him and his desire to go westward decades before the concept of "manifest destiny" was officially the American policy. On the flip side of this coin, Clavin and Drury do an excellent job telling us about the natives who lived in the "uncharted" west and how they interacted with the invading Americans, as well as how different tribes influenced the French and Indian War and the American Revolution, the treaties various tribes made with the British, etc. The authors don't spare turn away from the crimes Americans committed against the tribes, or the blood spilled and lives lost on both sides as the Americans moved westward. An excellent and highly readable focus on a little known but highly romanticized period of American history. A definite must read. I received an ARC of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

  26. 5 out of 5

    David

    An interesting story of the expansion of American civilization into the wilderness during the 18th century. The book is a biography of Daniel Boone but in a broader sense is a history of the subjugation of the native tribes. Simon Girty, a white man who lived with the Indians, made the following speech before going into battle: “Brothers, the Long Knives have overrun your country and usurped your hunting grounds. They have destroyed the cane, trodden down the clover, killed the deer and the buff An interesting story of the expansion of American civilization into the wilderness during the 18th century. The book is a biography of Daniel Boone but in a broader sense is a history of the subjugation of the native tribes. Simon Girty, a white man who lived with the Indians, made the following speech before going into battle: “Brothers, the Long Knives have overrun your country and usurped your hunting grounds. They have destroyed the cane, trodden down the clover, killed the deer and the buffalo, the bear and the raccoon. The beaver has been chased from his dam and forced to leave the country. Were there a voice in the trees in the forest, it would call you to chase away these ruthless invaders who are leading it to waste.” Daniel Boone‘s life is not glamorized, but he is depicted as he was: a great hunter and woodsman, an Indian fighter who honored the ways of the natives, a family man and a bold adventurer. His life was filled with loss and sadness, danger and adventure, and is much more interesting than the stories told on television. The book is well researched and written. As an aside, I noted more sesquipedalian words in this book than any other book I have read. I was constantly using the dictionary function of my Kindle to find the meaning of a word that I’ve never seen before. I’ve read several books by Tom Clavin and have not noticed his other writings being overly verbose. It was sometimes distracting, but also educational. Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for providing an advance reader copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Lori L (She Treads Softly)

    Blood and Treasure: Daniel Boone and the Fight for America's First Frontier by Bob Drury and Tom Clavin is a highly recommended account of the life of the legendary Daniel Boone. Drury and Clavin present a detailed and well written narrative that is both a history of the times and a biography of Daniel Boone. This was a different time and place from the world we know today. It is the mid-eighteenth century in Colonial America. There are wars between the French, English, and Native tribes. All of Blood and Treasure: Daniel Boone and the Fight for America's First Frontier by Bob Drury and Tom Clavin is a highly recommended account of the life of the legendary Daniel Boone. Drury and Clavin present a detailed and well written narrative that is both a history of the times and a biography of Daniel Boone. This was a different time and place from the world we know today. It is the mid-eighteenth century in Colonial America. There are wars between the French, English, and Native tribes. All of this affected the lives of settlers, including the Boone family. This history focuses on the settlement of North America's first frontier and the Boone families migration from New England to settle the Carolinas and across the Appalachians to Kentucky. It is clearly presented why Daniel Boone is such a legendary, larger-than-life, amazing historical figure. This is a well-written, accurate, well-researched, and unbiased account that is placed firmly in the context of the times, so it can be violent. It is told through the people who were there, experiencing the events depicted. Once the narrative starts, it is full of fast-paced, non-stop action. Drury and Clavin include footnotes to document the chronicle of events in Boone's life and times. The narrative covers a lot of territory, covering areas ranging from Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina, Kentucky, Florida, and Illinois. Disclosure: My review copy was courtesy of St. Martin's Publishing Group in exchange for my honest opinion.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Shelly

    I received an advance review copy through NetGalley. Recognizing that you can’t write an historical book about Daniel Boone and his accomplishments as a frontiersman without also providing contextual stories about the Native indigenous population and subsequent conflicts, I often found myself wondering which one was the book about. Did the authors really want to tell the story of the much aligned Native population and used the documented life of well-known Daniel Boone as the focal point of the I received an advance review copy through NetGalley. Recognizing that you can’t write an historical book about Daniel Boone and his accomplishments as a frontiersman without also providing contextual stories about the Native indigenous population and subsequent conflicts, I often found myself wondering which one was the book about. Did the authors really want to tell the story of the much aligned Native population and used the documented life of well-known Daniel Boone as the focal point of the British expansion? If so, I might have suggested a different title, subtitle. Overall... I did enjoy gaining more information about the history presented in this scholarship - the back and forth contextual setting for the expansion of colonists into western North Carolina and then over the Appalachia into the Kentucky River Valley and the subsequent interactions with multiple native tribes. The book is well researched and valuable for understanding the political nature of the native population as it existed during this time. There are a lot of atrocities on both sides, although the authors do show a preference. I hated the ending. The final paragraph completely soured the book for me. In this advance copy there are quite a few phrases, turns of phrases, adjectives that reveal a distaste for Boone, frontier settlers, and the expansion. The story weaves an informative narrative when suddenly the authors personal opinion sticks out, leaving you wondering why that was necessary. This subtle sourness is the only reason I give the book four-stars.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Darla

    Daniel Boone was a man who wore many hats. Perhaps you picture him in his iconic coon cap to accessorize his buckskin shirt and britches -- a rifle perched on his shoulder. After reading this new release, I have a much more comprehensive view of the famous pioneer and his role in colonizing the area west of the Ohio River and as a part of the Revolutionary War. In his 70+ years, Daniel was a son, brother, husband, father, hunter, scout, guide, negotiator, real estate mogul, engineer, and more. H Daniel Boone was a man who wore many hats. Perhaps you picture him in his iconic coon cap to accessorize his buckskin shirt and britches -- a rifle perched on his shoulder. After reading this new release, I have a much more comprehensive view of the famous pioneer and his role in colonizing the area west of the Ohio River and as a part of the Revolutionary War. In his 70+ years, Daniel was a son, brother, husband, father, hunter, scout, guide, negotiator, real estate mogul, engineer, and more. He was larger than life and times were messy. This meticulously researched volume shed so much light on what it was like to live in the mid to late 18th century. There was so much blood shed over the treasure of the land and quest for freedom. My horizons have been widened considerably and I have gained a larger understanding of the plight of the indigenous peoples as our country expanded beyond the Appalachians. You might be wondering, why my rating is not five stars. There are two reasons: 1) The ARC I read did not have maps and I process new information more efficiently with visual aids. 2) There were a large number of names and places introduced and I would have loved access to an index to revisit the other mentions of that person or place in the narrative. Coincidentally, I had already been planning to rewatch 'The Last of the Mohicans.' Can't think of a better movie to complement this book. Thank you to St. Martins Press for sending me a paperback ARC of this fascinating new book. It truly is a treasure.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Christy Martin

    Blood and Treasure is a biography of the pioneer, American hero, and trailblazer Daniel Boone. The authors, Bob Drury and Tom Clavin, in Blood and Treasure, tell a fascinating story of the man from his early childhood in Pennsylvania to his later years. Over the span of his lifetime, Daniel Boone explored, trapped, fought Indians, built forts, cabins, fathered nine or so children, and blazed trails thru the Appalachians that were previously inaccessible to settlers and most pioneers. The book se Blood and Treasure is a biography of the pioneer, American hero, and trailblazer Daniel Boone. The authors, Bob Drury and Tom Clavin, in Blood and Treasure, tell a fascinating story of the man from his early childhood in Pennsylvania to his later years. Over the span of his lifetime, Daniel Boone explored, trapped, fought Indians, built forts, cabins, fathered nine or so children, and blazed trails thru the Appalachians that were previously inaccessible to settlers and most pioneers. The book sets out to dispel myths about Daniel Boone but the reader cannot help but be amazed at Daniel Boone nonetheless. An expert shot from the time he used his first rifle, Boone was also a trapper, hunter, surveyor, land speculator, and tradesman. Boone was a keen observer of Indian ways and knew survival medicine and how to repair the basic long and short rifles of his day. This book does not portray him as the cult television hero, but as a strong man, a survivor, and a true pathfinder and trailblazer. Boone himself did not like that he was portrayed as an Indian fighter, instead preferring that he be remembered historically as doing what he had to do to survive in the wilderness of his era. For lovers of the history of the age of Boone and the region around the Cumberland Gap and Kentucky where he spent many years of his prime, this is a must read. Thanks to #NetGalley for the opportunity to read and review #BloodandTreasure.

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