Drinking In America: Our Secret History (Hardback)Susan Cheever (author)
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In DRINKING IN AMERICA, best-selling author and historian Susan Cheever chronicles the many stages to our national love affair with booze, taking a long, thoughtful look at the way alcohol has permeated and affected our nation's history from the drunkenness of George Washington to the current effect of alcohol abuse American health care.
Drinking is a cherished American custom--a way to celebrate and a way to grieve and a way to take the edge off. But where is the line between a good time and a whirlwind of destruction, between a few glasses of wine and the kind of alcoholism that leads to violence of the body and of the soul. Both a lively history and unflinching cultural investigation, DRINKING IN AMERICA unveils our torrid affair with alcohol, asking: When are we going to wake up and smell the whiskey?
Publisher: Little, Brown & Company
Number of pages: 240
Weight: 462 g
Dimensions: 164 x 235 x 27 mm
"A fascinating look at the place and function of alcohol throughout American history...[Cheever] offers a colorful portrait of a society that, like her own family, has been indelibly shaped by its drinking habits. An intelligently argued study of our country's 'passionate connection to drinking.'" "Kirkus Reviews""
"I can't stop raving (soberly!) about Susan Cheever's new book... It is both enlightening and frightening. A brilliant and important addition to our understanding of what goes wrong and what can continue to go wrong in a world dominated by the most deadly legal liquid ever invented." "Judy Collins""
"Cheever's central observation is fascinating...The melting pot, it seems, was also a mixing bowl." "Publishers Weekly""
"Insightful...well-researched and well-developed...An engrossing, in-depth examination of the profound ways alcohol and drinking have shaped and contributed to American history." "Shelf Awareness""
"Cheever offers up sideways views that are intriguing." "Associated Press""
"Full of fascinating details...this book is an important and highly entertaining step in the right direction." "Women's Voices for Change""
"Cheever is full of such shocking and often delightful revelations of a history we never learned in school." "Newsday""
"Compelling...[a] brisk drinker's companion to US history, which runs a black light over the archives to ask: who was loaded, and why did it matter?... It's the fourth of Wilson's famous 12 steps that made it common practice for sober folk to dig into their own pasts in order to articulate the role of alcohol - to create a 'searching and fearless moral inventory' - and with DRINKING IN AMERICA, Cheever submits the US to a similar investigation. Along the way, we see a country struggling to negotiate its freedoms, nurtured by alcohol and undone by it as well....This approach can be illuminating, turning those sepia-toned historical figures in wigs into uncertain young men with tankards of rum in their hands." "Los Angeles Review of Books""
"Full of compelling ideas...Cheever is smart, perceptive and disciplined...Her Nixon chapter in particular is alternately horrifying and delightful, and paints a compelling picture of the monstrous complexity of a 'great man.'" "Buffalo News""
"Cheever addresses serious subjects with casual and at times humorous prose, making this book surprisingly fun to read. You won't find this booze-filled version of American history in any textbooks, but as with any good barroom conversation, you'll learn just as much." "Kansas City Star""
"Packed with the liquor-soaked legacy of our country...[Cheever] presents a chronicle of the United States that has, to my knowledge, never been attempted. And it is a riveting, revisionist take on so many great events and people...fascinating, unusual history." "The Palm Beach Post""
"A unique cultural tour." "BookTrib""
"Vivid...some of the book's most affecting moments arrive when Cheever discusses her family's drinking problems. " "The San Francisco Chronicle""
"Cheever serves up a sober cocktail of American history...offers up sideways views that are intriguing." "Associated Press""
"Goes down like a smooth glass of wine after a long day...Whether you're a drinker or a teetotaler, if you like a wee nip of history, then here's the book you want." "The Bookworm Sez""
"A highly readable, in-your-face look at not only the destructive power of alcohol in America, but the strange way it shaped our history." "San Antonio Express-News""
"If you're looking for a sobering introduction to drunk history, this is the book for you." "Toronto Star""
"At once fascinating and slightly disturbing." "The Oklahoman ""
"DRINKING IN AMERICA at times has many shocking revelations of the role alcohol has played in our country that is a great addition to the legends of this nation." "Midwest Book Review""
"This is "Drunk History," but thoroughly researched and soberly elucidated." "The Portland Mercury""
"Cheever lays bare something many of us know intimately: 'alcoholism is a family disease, ' she writes, and its roots in the American family run deep." "Boston Globe""
"[A] cockeyed retelling of the American story." "The Week""
"A riveting, revisionist take on so many great events and people... fascinating, unusual history... her research is spot on." "The New York Social Diary""
"A chronicle of America's past that is full of details they never told you back in fifth grade." "Minneapolis Star Tribune"""
"Informative, entertaining and scary...this book brings history to life and pours it a tall one." "High Times""