Winner of the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for history, Taylor’s book centers on the War of 1812, when thousands of slaves sought liberty by escaping to the British side, and traces the social complexities of slavery in Virginia from the American Revolution through Nat Turner’s revolt in 1831.
...impressively researched and beautifully crafted ... [Taylor's] main focus here is the War of 1812, but he admirably contextualizes it with a brilliant account of slavery in Virginia during and after the Revolution ... If The Internal Enemy makes Virginia's Founding Fathers look appallingly self-absorbed, it also makes them look distinctly human.
...[a] remarkable new book ... It’s an extraordinary story, and The Internal Enemy tells it in vivid prose and compelling, deeply researched detail. But Taylor never gets lost in details. He has important things to say — about slavery, about war and about America ... Indeed, it’s hard not to be dazzled by the ease with which Taylor moves from the lives of individual slaves, to the history of a large planter family, to the fault lines of Virginia politics, to the national debate over slavery in the western territories, out into the Atlantic world to the history of the British Empire.