Reviews

  • "Captivating, scholarly and addictively readable… Rebecca Fraser has the rare gift of being able to marshal and communicate a mountainous quantity of often original research in such a deft and elegant manner that it never becomes indigestible or irrelevant. [...] When a sidestep outside her rigorous chronological account is required, she executes it nimbly, without breaking her stride. If she reaches a period of scanty evidence, she admits it, and her suggestions carry the conviction of expertise. Everything is rooted in provable fact, much of it new"

    Sue Gaisford, Financial Times
  • "Rebecca Fraser tells this familiar story with wonderful immediacy; the Winslows come across not as strange characters from the distant past, but as real people with passions and anxieties familiar to us all"

    Gerard De Groot, The Times
  • "It is engagingly written and often compelling. There is an eye for memorable detail… The later account of “King Philip’s war” is both graphic and gripping… The author is a careful researcher, fair and level-headed. She is also an excellent painter of characters; in judging them, she looks as their deeds with contemporary mores in mind… Even if the Mayflower shelf is a crowded one, this is a book that deserves its place on it"

    The Economist
  • "[Fraser] has threaded the important historiographical innovations seamlessly into her text, paying more attention than hitherto to the experiences of early colonial women, and drawing on the lessons of ethno-history in her portrayal of Indian tribes... A brilliant combination of synthesis and original research arriving in good time for the celebration of the quincentenary of the Mayflower"

    Mark Bostridge, The Spectator
  • "Fascinating… Rebecca Fraser commands a sprawling canvas, beginning in 1595 with the birth of Edward Winslow and ending in 1704 with the death of Peregrine White… Edward Winslow’s excitement at arriving in Leiden, with its free-thinking university, is vividly captured. So, too, are the perils of the Mayflower’s voyage… There is also a rich sense of the enormous possibilities offered by the New World… This is a thrilling story, admirably told"

    Anthony Gardner, Tablet
  • "Fraser is an experienced, sensitive biographer... [She] has clearly set her sights on addressing an audience of intelligent, curious, lay people. She has written with an awareness of the powerful cultural heritage the colonial Puritans created in New England and occasionally alludes to nineteenth-century commentators on them. It is a measure of her success that, after a lifetime of teaching and writing about American history, I found her story illuminating points I had never before fully appreciated."

    Daniel Howe, The Oldie
  • "An intimate view of colonial life, an approachable companion to more forbidding scholarly studies"

    Wall Street Journal
  • "The Mayflower Generation makes a convincing case that the Winslows, father and son, played as important a role in New England’s development as the better-known William Bradford and John Winthrop"

    Virginia DeJohn Anderson, TLS
  • "Fraser’s smooth storytelling provides a revealing look into the development of the [Plymouth] colony, the rise of the Massachusetts Bay Company, and the different outlooks on the community and the lure of land. The story of the Winslows is an effective way to experience the emotions and fears of the small band who dauntlessly sailed off to the New World"

    Kirkus Review
  • "Epic in scope and pacing, this account of survival feels intimate... The author's inclusion of indigenous history along with the struggles of women pilgrims and their importance to the community's success is both appreciated and necessary"

    Library Journal