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Washington and Caesar

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Description

Inspired by a little-known historical fact—that American slaves fought alongside the British in the Revolutionary War—this epic novel tells of a Mount Vernon slave who joins a Loyalist black regiment charged with defeating his former master on the battlefield.

The year is 1773. A new slave arrives at George Washington's Virginia estate and is given the name Caesar. But the war for independence will soon bring a turn of events neither master nor slave could have predicted. Within months they will be fighting on opposite sides: Washington as commander of the Continental Army, Caesar as a soldier in the legendary Loyalist corps made up of former slaves. In this captivating tour de force brimming with spectacular battle scenes and gripping historical detail, Caesar's perilous rise through the British ranks is deftly interwoven with the story of Washington's war years, leading to the day when they come face-to-face again—this time in uniform.

From the Hardcover edition.

From Publishers Weekly

Nov 24, 2003 – This historical novel dramatizes the American Revolution from the dual viewpoints of George Washington and Caesar, Washington's "dogs boy" slave who escapes Mount Vernon to become a soldier in the Loyal Ethiopians, a unit of runaway slaves who fought alongside the British in exchange for manumission. Cameron hits on the oft-ignored and embarrassing fact that America's fight for freedom from the British never prevented even the most fervent patriot from owning slaves. The exploration of this tragic irony, however, undermines Cameron's effort. Not satisfied with establishing the point and moving into the dense military and political machinations of the ordeal itself, Cameron belabors the issue on almost every page. To the author's credit, his portrayal of George Washington, particularly in the early chapters, is compelling. He humanizes the general and presents him as a modest but self-confident gentlemen farmer who acknowledges his limitations as readily as he embraces his duty. Caesar's initial characterization as a victim of the greatest moral injustice in American history is also believable, but Cameron cultivates in him a near savant precociousness that strains credibility. The novel is meticulously accurate in its historical detail (if sometimes repetitive), but the story meanders in an undisciplined way before finally grinding to a tedious and predictable ending. FYI: Cameron is the son half of the father-son team that writes the Alan Craik thriller series under the pseudonym Gordon Kent.
Washington and Caesar
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  • $4.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Historical
  • Published: Dec 30, 2003
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Seller: Penguin Random House LLC
  • Print Length: 592 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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