The American Revolution by Gordon S. Wood

General Description (from
Gordon S. Wood’s The American Revolution, part of the Modern Library Chronicles series, is an erudite, concise summary of the events and circumstances surrounding the seminal conflict, both physical and philosophical, in American history. The Modern Library Chronicles are accessible-but-serious works of scholarship, meant to serve as introductions (or refresher courses) on large subjects for interested readers. The American Revolution is an excellent case in point. Wood deftly describes seeds of the Revolution, most notably disgruntlement on the colonists’ part brought about by increasingly maladroit and fiscally punishing British policies. He then follows the course of actual warfare and its aftermath, most interestingly the fraught, bitter battle to draw a governing blueprint for the new country. Wood breaks little new interpretive ground himself, here, but as a synthesizer (and amiable, skillful narrator/guide) he stands on high ground. –H. O’Billovitch

Why the President Should Read This Book
A good summary/overview of not just the war itself, but events leading up to it. While this is not a long, comprehensive, or extremely thorough history, it provides a good start to understanding the motivations of those who created this country.