No event in American history was more pivotal—or more furiously contested—than Congress's decision to declare independence in July 1776. In this history, the author of A Leap in the Dark and The Ascent of George Washington traces the nation's unsteady pursuit of freedom, from protest to revolution to military victory. John Ferling examines not only the loyalists and rebels in America, but the hardliners and American sympathizers in Britain's Parliament, to show how a nation was born and a colony was lost.
"John Ferling has established himself as one of the leading chroniclers of the American Revolution, but Independence goes beyond anything he has written before. Instead of recycling the familiar story of the Revolution, he has given us an enlightening and exciting book that proves that history has no guarantees or foreordained outcomes. Expertly blending biographical vignettes with fast-paced narrative and sure-footed interpretation, Ferling captures the mystery of historical contingency in exploring the period between the Boston Tea Party in 1773 and the declaration of American independence in 1776."—R.B. Bernstein