Magnificent ... Philbrick’s writing is just superb, and while he manages to incorporate many marvelous and little know stories and vignettes, the book reads almost like a Tom Clancy thriller, with political intrigue, international machinations, and suspense keeping the pages turning even if the reader is already basically familiar with the story ... this book will delight, educate, and entertain while it brings to light the genius, chance, and sacrifice that finally brought about America’s independence.
... a tension-filled and riveting account of the alliance that assured American independence ... Philbrick is a master of narrative, and he does not disappoint as he provides a meticulous and often hair-raising account of a naval war between France and England and a land war that pitted American and French troops against British regulars and Loyalist volunteers ... Not everyone will find Philbrick’s detailed coverage of naval and military engagements easy to follow or fully engaging. A landlubber like me felt overwhelmed by some of the nautical language. This should not deter readers, however, for despite the author’s obvious relish in recounting the battles on sea and land, those engagements are not the entire focus of the book. Philbrick has a second, perhaps more compelling theme: how the character of men shapes the history they make ... In In the Hurricane’s Eye Philbrick occasionally succumbs to the lure of historical fortune-telling that marred his previous book ... But such pronouncements — offered largely, one suspects, for dramatic effect — do not detract from the authentic drama of the story Philbrick has to tell, a drama that ultimately centers not on nature but on Washington.
It's a startling take on a familiar history that one might expect from this author ... The book is filled with land battles, sea maneuvers, conspiracies, hurricanes ... Along the way Philbrick guides the marine-challenged reader ... There are a lot of troops, ships and engagements to keep track of. The book has helpful battle maps, but this reader could have used more. And my dictionary had to substitute for the publisher's failure to provide a glossary of 18th-century nautical and military terminology. But these are minor complaints. Philbrick's book is a fascinating fresh take on an old story. As is often the case in war, victory in the American Revolution was won by both genius and luck.