I received a free Kindle copy of this book courtesy of Net Galley and the Penguin Group (the publisher). It was in exchange for a review to be posted to Net Galley, Amazon and my blog. I also posted it to my Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google Plus pages.
I requested this book as I have a keen interest in American History and the Revolutionary War. This is the first book concerning Benedict Arnold in detail that I have read. I have read other books by Nathaniel Philbrick including The Mayflower, Bunker Hill, and The Last Stand.
Valiant Ambition is similar to other books by the author in that I found it to be engaging and well researched. He presented some new insights into George Washington’s internal conflict with his position as the head of the Continental Army that I have not come across in numerous other biographies of Washington. I found his description of Benedict Arnold to be of great interest as this is the first time I have really read about him other than overviews of his turning traitor to the cause with the attempted overthrow of West Point. In addition to Washington and Arnold, Philbrick also gives a somewhat less detailed analysis of numerous other characters involved at one point or another.
My only disappointment in the book is that he wrapped it up quickly without going into more detail of what transpired with Benedict Arnold after the war. That said, I recommend this book to anyone who desires to learn more about the first great American traitor.