J. L. BELL is a Massachusetts writer who specializes in (among other things) the start of the American Revolution in and around Boston. He is particularly interested in the experiences of children in 1765-75. He has published scholarly papers and popular articles for both children and adults. He was consultant for an episode of History Detectives, and contributed to a display at Minute Man National Historic Park.

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Thursday, May 26, 2016

Derek W. Beck’s Book Signings around Boston

With the launch of The Road to Concord coming up on Thursday, 2 June, I’m going to highlight some other Revolutionary literature of note.

Derek W. Beck is coming to Massachusetts in June to talk about Igniting the American Revolution and The War Before Independence. These two books retell the major stories of the American Revolution from 1773 to 1776.

Igniting the American Revolution starts with the Boston Tea Party, shifts to Parliament’s debates over how to respond to that act, and comes back to Massachusetts for a detailed retelling of the Battle of Lexington and Concord.

The War Before Independence covers the Battle of Bunker Hill, the American invasion of Canada, and the end of the siege of Boston. As of April 1776, with the exception of a few small outposts, the British military had been driven out of the thirteen colonies represented at the Continental Congress. When the Congress declared independence from royal control, it was putting a legal stamp on a situation that already existed—at least for a couple more months.

Beck is both an engineer and a military officer, and he excels at analyzing and describing the technical details of well-known actions.

Here are the places around Boston where he’ll be speaking and signing books next month:
  • 14 June, 7:00, Porter Square Books, Cambridge
  • 15 June, 7:00, Minute Man National Historical Park (Beck’s website says this signing will take place in Concord, but the park says it will be at the visitor center in Lexington, and I’m inclined to believe the latter.)
  • 20 June, 6:30, Old South Meeting House, Boston
  • 21 June, 6:00, Boston Athenaeum
  • 22 June, 6:00, Charlestown Historical Society
For more details and venues outside Massachusetts, check Beck’s webpage.

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