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Mayflower: A Story of Courage, Community, and War by Nathaniel Philbrick
With Mayflower, Nathaniel Philbrick turns the romantic notions of the first New England settlement on their head with his intent to tell the true history. The two-month journey across the Atlantic was long and painful, and when they arrived (not at Plymouth Rock), they first encamped on an Indian graveyard. The Pokanoket tribe had been suffering from a mysterious plague which left their numbers weakened enough that they couldn't confront the new settlers, but were forced to make peace with them. After the first Thanksgiving (think squatting, not sitting), the number of settlers increased rapidly with new arrivals, and interactions with the natives became more confrontational. Indians were sold into slavery, forced off their land, and within a few generations, outright warfare was brought to them. Mayflower has received positive reviews with the New York Times saying, "He has written a judicious, fascinating work of revisionist history. Mayflower is a surprise-filled account of what are supposed to be some of the best-known events in the American past but are instead an occasion for collective amnesia."