Reader reviews and comments on Founding Brothers, plus links to write your own review.

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Founding Brothers

The Revolutionary Generation

by Joseph J. Ellis

Founding Brothers
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  • First Published:
    Oct 2000, 288 pages
    Feb 2002, 304 pages

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There are currently 184 reader reviews for Founding Brothers
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Jessica (09/09/10)

This book is BORING!!!
I have to read this book for American Studies 1 Honors and I swear it is the most boring book I read. It is hard to read 5 pages without falling asleep. If I'm not mistaking, it took me 2-3 hours to read a chapter. I couldn't read any faster since it was so boring. Dying is faster. Don't read unless forced. More than half the people in school didn't read it.
ap us (09/06/10)

It was awful. I literally fell asleep within 1 and a half pages of reading. I will take me a decade to read this horrible, boring story. Maybe less if I just commit suicide now. Do not read unless forced.
Agreed with others (08/26/10)

I agree with the other 2 guys that wrote a review b4 me. This book sucks. Ellis took good pieces of history and wrote it in a way so that no one could understand. Dammit, go in a straight line, instead of curving back and forth. I'm going to go crazy. Bad bad book, do not read it, unless you are a crazy history nerd. Awful book.
goin to die (08/23/10)

I love history but once I read this I wanted to shoot myself. I'm sure Ellis worked hard on this book but only like 10 people loved it and another 10000000 wanted to die.

Ellis, at least you get an another award besides the Pulitzer prize: The book with the most 1 rating out of 5. Good job
the sage (08/20/10)

This book is so boring and terrible. Its like he used the thesaurus to find the most obscure synonyms for every word, which just makes the already boring and useless book, that much worse. Warning!! Do not read this book unless you have to, because it's painful to get through
Don G. (08/19/10)

If you only knew what you don't know.
Ellis' book is a great read. People who read it with the idea that history is a noun, full of facts, dates, people, and places, miss the point. Ellis intends us to look at history as a verb, the inquiry, not the things, but the relationship between the things. Ellis isn't trying to tell us about Hamilton or Jefferson, he is trying to tell us about the relationship between these two powerful men that led to a historic compromise. As a former AP US History I can appreciate some student's frustration, but I often feel we waste real good history on young people.
founding bros (08/15/10)

Just because I am VERY interested in History
I have never read such a challenging book in my young life before but after the first few pages, the style and essence of Ellis' writing really hit me as eloquent, intriguing, and insightful. I believe that this book is the right choice for someone who likes to be challenged and at the same time, is engrossed in all the stories and people history has to offer us.
z00 (08/11/10)

Notwithstanding... Is that even a word?
Where do I begin? This work of overly flamboyant vocabulary, 4 page paragraphs, and mind-numbing overcomplexity is the best example to date of three pounds of candy in a 100 pound bag.
I commend Joseph J. Ellis for the 20 years he probably spent poring over a dictionary to fill a story that could be told in a mere 40 pages, with so many adjectives, so much pointless information, and the most annoyingly extreme degree of detail I have ever experienced in a literary work. Let us also not forget to recognize so many school districts for assigning 248 pages (more with notes) of absolute TORTURE as a "summer reading assignment" for the vast majority of A.P. U.S. history students across the country. Not to exaggerate, but I think the suicide rate in children between sixteen and eighteen years of age may experience a spike as the summer draws to a close, and children around the nation begin to pick up this work of excruciating pain, hoping to finish it before the school year begins.
If you are a hermit, despot, or just a fat, mean old man, who wants to be left alone for an afternoon of reading on the beach, please tape the cover of "founding brothers" to the back of your book of choice. When those annoying teenagers spot a glimpse of that beige spine with the presidential portraits, you can be sure they will keep a distance of at least 3 miles.
It's true: somehow, be it to maintain the poseur reputation of a well-read intellectual, some critics will actually claim to ENJOY this novel. I guess in the end, this is a free country (a country whose founding is described in this book in the most boring and tasteless fashion imaginable), but a word of kindly advice to the author of this piece: seeing as the educational system seems to favor your books for their summer reading assignments, in the future, please; just stick to short stories.

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