The following books are pre-approved for the book review essay assignment. They are listed in approximate chronological sequence according to subject matter. Students wishing to review a book not on this list should first obtain permission from the instructor.

After selecting a book, consult Finding Book Reviews for advice on completing the next step in your assignment.

  • Joanna L. Stratton, Pioneer Women: Voices from the Kansas Frontier (1981)
  • Jon K. Lauck, Prairie Republic: The Political Culture of Dakota Territory, 1879-1889 (2010)
  • Tera W. Hunter, To ’Joy My Freedom: Southern Black Women’s Lives and Labors after the Civil War (1997)
  • Richard White, Remembering Ahanagran: Storytelling in a Family’s Past [Irish-American Immigrants] (1998); or with revised subtitle: A History of Stories (paperback ed., 2004)
  • Katharine Du Pre Lumpkin, The Making of a Southerner (1991)
  • Leon Litwack, Trouble in Mind: Black Southerners in the Age of Jim Crow (1998)
  • Mary Frances Berry, My Face Is Black Is True: Callie House and the Struggle for Ex-Slave Reparations (2005)
  • David M. Kennedy, Over Here: The First World War and American Society (1980)
  • Robert H. Ferrell, America’s Deadliest Battle: Meuse-Argonne, 1918 (2007)
  • Byron Farwell, Over There: The United States in the Great War, 1917–1918 (1999)
  • George M. Marsden, Fundamentalism and American Culture: The Shaping of Twentieth-Century Evangelicalism, 1870–1925 (1980)
  • Richard Fox, Reinhold Niebuhr: A Biography (1985)
  • David E. Ruth, Inventing the Public Enemy: The Gangster in American Culture, 1918–1934 (1996)
  • James H. Madison, A Lynching in the Heartland: Race and Memory in America (2001)
  • Robert A. Orsi, The Madonna of 115th Street: Faith and Community in Italian Harlem, 1880–1950 (1985)
  • Amity Shlaes, The Forgotten Man: A New History of the Great Depression (2007)
  • Lizabeth Cohen, Making a New Deal: Industrial Workers in Chicago, 1919–1939 (1990)
  • Alan Brinkley, The End of Reform: New Deal Liberalism in Recession and War (1995)
  • Robert Cohen, ed., Dear Mrs. Roosevelt: Letters from Children of the Great Depression (2002)
  • Blanche Caldwell Barrow, My Life with Bonnie and Clyde (2004)
  • Daryl Michael Scott, Contempt and Pity: Social Policy and the Image of the Damaged Black Psyche 1880–1996 (1997)
  • Robert A. Orsi, Thank You, St. Jude: Women’s Devotion to the Patron Saint of Hopeless Causes (1996)
  • Nicholas Lemann, The Promised Land: The Great Black Migration and How It Changed America (1992)
  • Mark Harrison, ed., The Economics of World War II: Six Great Powers in International Comparison (1998)
  • Jean McAnlis McMurdie, Land of the Morning: A Civilian Internee’s Poignant Memories of Sunshine and Shadows (2001), to be read with William F. McMurdie, Hey, Mac! A Combat Infantryman’s Story [WWII Memoirs] (2000) [Book review available by clicking here.]
  • Melvyn P. Leffler, The Specter of Communism: The United States and the Origins of the Cold War, 1917–1953 (1994)
  • John T. McGreevy, Parish Boundaries: The Catholic Encounter with Race in the Twentieth-Century Urban North (1996)
  • Alan Ehrenhalt, The Lost City: The Forgotten Virtues of Community in America (1995)
  • John A. Salmond, “My Mind Set on Freedom”: A History of the Civil Rights Movement, 1954–1968 (1997)
  • William Doyle, An American Insurrection: James Meredith and the Battle of Oxford, Mississippi, 1962 [Civil Rights and Education] (2003)
  • Lisa McGirr, Suburban Warriors: The Origins of the New American Right (2001)
  • Patrick Allitt, The Conservatives: Ideas and Personalities throughout American History (2009)
  • Robert N. Bellah, et al., Habits of the Heart: Individualism and Commitment in American Life (1985)
  • B. Mark Smith, Toward Rational Exuberance: The Evolution of the Modern Stock Market (2001)
  • Eric Foner, The Story of American Freedom (1998)
  • David A. Hollinger, Postethnic America (1995)
  • Samuel P. Huntington, Who Are We? The Challenges to America’s National Identity (2004)
  • Nancy Gibbs and Michael Duffy, The Preacher and the Presidents: Billy Graham in the White House (2007)
  • Colin Woodward, American Character: A History of the Epic Struggle between Individual Liberty and the Common Good (2016)
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