The First Global War: Britain, France, and the Fate of North America, 1756-1775

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Greenwood Publishing Group, 2000 - History - 308 pages

By 1756 the wilderness war for control of North America that erupted two years earlier between France and England had expanded into a global struggle among all of Europe's Great Powers. Its land and sea battles raged across the North American continent, engulfed Europe and India, and stretched from the Atlantic to the Mediterranean, Indian, and Pacific waters. The new conflict, now commonly known as the Seven Years' War of 1756-1763, was a direct continuation of the last French and Indian War. This study explores the North American campaigns in relation to events elsewhere in the world, from the ministries of Whitehall and Versailles to the land and sea battles in Europe, Africa, South Asia, and the Caribbean.

Few wars have had a more decisive effect on international relations and national development. The French and Indian War resulted in France's expulsion from almost all of the Western Hemisphere, except for some tiny islands in the Caribbean and St. Lawrence. Britain emerged as the world's dominant sea power and would remain so for two centuries. Finally, within a generation or two the vast debts incurred by Whitehall and Versailles in waging this war would help to stimulate revolutions in America and France that would forever change world history.


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Nester is a very good technical writer. The facts are there.... presented in clear and deliberate words and phrases. The use of annual milestones as chapters has a real advantage over subject matter ... events that occured simultaneously can be viewed and their linkages made apparent. All sources are clearly documented as well. Though there is some speculation in the book ("what if Abercromby had shelled Ticonderoga....") there is little personal prejudice apparent in some books e.g. Parkman.
Nevertheless, if you know the material, you may find these books boring. Yes there were a few new facts I was exposed to but in general it was easy to see why I was able to obtain this and its companion book "Great Frontier War", at colleges rather than public libraries. They read almost like text books. Nester gets an A+ for material but only a B for presentation. maps, no drawings, no photos of paintings and no renditions of original source materials.
Necker is one of the better authors but for my money there are only two Best authors, Francis Parkman and Fred Anderson. Parkman for the sheer entertainment value and Anderson for the optimum combination of material, writing style,formatt of book and entertainment value..



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About the author (2000)

WILLIAM R. NESTER is Professor in the Department of Government and Politics at St. John's University in New York. He is the author of eleven books which explore various aspects of international relations and political economy and two books on the American frontier.

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