• Young Washington

  • How Wilderness and War Forged America's Founding Father
  • By: Peter Stark
  • Narrated by: Malcolm Hillgartner
  • Length: 15 hrs and 31 mins
  • 4.6 out of 5 stars (109 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

A vivid and groundbreaking portrait of a young, struggling George Washington that casts a new light on his character and the history of American independence, from the best-selling author of Astoria

Two decades before he led America to independence, George Washington was a flailing young soldier serving the British Empire in the vast wilderness of the Ohio Valley. Naive and self-absorbed, the 22-year-old officer accidentally ignited the French and Indian War - a conflict that opened colonists to the possibility of an American Revolution.

With powerful narrative drive and vivid writing, Young Washington recounts the wilderness trials, controversial battles, and emotional entanglements that transformed Washington from a temperamental striver into a mature leader. Enduring terrifying summer storms and subzero winters imparted resilience and self-reliance, helping prepare him for what he would one day face at Valley Forge. Leading the Virginia troops into battle taught him to set aside his own relentless ambitions and stand in solidarity with those who looked to him for leadership. Negotiating military strategy with British and colonial allies honed his diplomatic skills. And thwarted in his obsessive, youthful love for one woman, he grew to cultivate deeper, enduring relationships.   

By weaving together Washington’s harrowing wilderness adventures and a broader historical context, Young Washington offers new insights into the dramatic years that shaped the man who shaped a nation.

©2018 Peter Stark (P)2018 HarperCollins Publishers

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What listeners say about Young Washington

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Loved learning how a greater leader became one!

Great book. It made some assumptions, but framed them accordingly. Seemed to overplay the affections toward a friend, but otherwise it was top notch.

3 people found this helpful

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Excellent.

Well written, well researched, well read. I loved the historical detail and insights into Washington's personality and motivations. I enjoyed the narrator much more than Scott Brick's narration of George Washington, A Life. This book is a wonderful complement to that biography.

2 people found this helpful

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Great book

Great book on our greatest presidents early life. I strongly recommend this book. Great audio quality.

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Best Book I Have Ever Listened To...

I absolutely loved this book and will miss it terribly! I would recommend it to anyone!

1 person found this helpful

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Washington’s early life brought to life

I found this title to be very engaging both as a biography of Washington’s early adulthood and as a narrative history of the French and Indian War. Seeing Washington as more of a selfish or petulant young man and how circumstances in the colonial frontier helped change him was definitely fascinating. I agree with many other reviews that the author indeed does a large amount of speculating, but he is usually very clear when he is doing so. For the most part I didn’t mind except for Stark’s fixation on Washington secretly loving Sally Fairfax. While I tend to agree that he did based on the surviving evidence, there really wasn’t anything to suggest Washington’s feelings were reciprocated. Stark just couldn’t seem to let it go however and not only does he assume Sally had feelings for him in return, it forms a subplot to the entire book. As long as you remind yourself to take the author’s speculations as just that, you have a solid Washington biography.

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Very well done

Exceeded my expectations. Enjoyed the focus on Washington’s often overlooked early years. Ended up being a very informative book on French Indian War

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You think you know George Washington?

This is probably the most enlightening book on how and why President Washington ruled the way he did.
This work does not sugar coat or gloss over the failures and struggles that would craft the greatest President America has ever seen.
I cannot recommend this book enough to anyone who thinks they know who George Washington was.
Lovers of American history and The Founding Fathers have been missing this detailed account and it has been done in a magnificent way in this book!
Last but not least- he footnotes are such an amazing addition and add a rich texture to the story.
You really get a sense of how truly amazing it was to have this man in the right place at the absolutely right time in our founding and we would not be here as Americans in 2021 had it been any other man.

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Author’s antipathy towards GW ruins good history book

This book is good history but the author just can’t help belaboring his theory that GW was primarily a social climber.

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Dry

Pretty dry which is unlike most Stark’s history books. For a better and more interesting read that displays Stark’s prowess at writing and crafting a historical narrative; see Astoria-John Jacob Astor’s West Coast Empire.

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Catchy

I really enjoyed listening to this story about Washington’s youth. And my young kids loved listening too!! We all learned and got excited about the 18th century together!