Black Flags, Blue Waters by Eric Jay Dolin

Black Flags, Blue Waters

With surprising tales of vicious mutineers, imperial riches, and high-seas intrigue, Black Flags, Blue Waters vividly reanimates the “Golden Age” of piracy in the Americas.Set against the backdrop of the Age of Exploration, Black Flags, Blue Waters reveals the dramatic and surprising history of American piracy’s “Golden Age”―spanning the late 1600s through the early 1700s―when lawless pirates plied the coastal waters of North Americ...

Details Black Flags, Blue Waters

TitleBlack Flags, Blue Waters
Release DateSep 18th, 2018
GenreHistory, Nonfiction, Adventure, Pirates, North American Hi..., American History, Historical

Reviews Black Flags, Blue Waters

  • Carlos
    Wow, this was my first nonfiction book in a while. And of course, it had to be about pirates. This book deals with the reality of pirates and their effect on shipping around the Americas during the early colonial age. It explains how and why piracy rose and how and why it declined relating to the change in perception about pirates on the people who lived in the colonies. It also tells about how a mix of change of perception in the people and the ...
  • Cindy Vallar
    For five decades encompassing the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries, pirates played an integral role in colonial history and life. Initially, they were welcomed, but as the years passed, what was once profitable coexistence became a dogged determination to eradicate these sea marauders.Black Flags, Blue Waters presents the “celebrities” of this “golden age” of piracy with a narrowly focused lens. Most comparable volumes look...
  • Northumberland
    With surprising tales of vicious mutineers, imperial riches, and high-seas intrigue, Black Flags, Blue Waters vividly reanimates the “Golden Age” of piracy in the Americas.
  • William Barney
    “Black Flags, Blue Waters” is an equally amazing addition to the Eric Jay Dolin canon of historical non-fiction books! This title focuses on the history of Piracy in the American colonies. Many of the pirates showcased in this book have interesting stories that will surprise many readers. Many of the myths and misconceptions about pirates are debunked in this work and proves that the real-life stories were way more fascinating and eye-opening...
  • Josh Liller
    I picked this up because I quite enjoyed two of the author's previous works, Brilliant Beacons and Leviathan. I'm not a pirate "fan" but I do find the subject somewhat interesting.BFBW takes some unusual directions. First, it focuses on the Golden Age of Piracy, but Dolin includes the late 1600s as well rather than just 1715-1726 (a quick internet search indicates this view his view is not unusual; it's simply not what I was familiar with). Secon...
  • George
    I loved this book. A detailed, well researched and compelling account of the golden age of piracy, through it's eventual decline. Other pirate books have focused on the exploits of the pirates, or on individual pirates and their careers, or on pirate "society", this book was different in that delved deep into the working relationship between pirates and the colonies of early America and New England. Although everyone naturally thinks of the Carib...
  • Christopher Klein
    Eric Jay Dolin writes a rollicking history of the "Golden Age" of American piracy. "Black Flags, Blue Waters" is not only heavily researched, but extremely readable. Much of what I thought I knew about pirates hadn't progressed much beyond the romanticized tales of buried treasure and swashbuckling buccaneers that captivates nearly every schoolchild, but the real history in "Black Flags, Blue Waters" is just as compelling. What I found most fasci...
  • Matt Nolan
    It's a good compliment to other books on pirates as this one covers a wide variety of pirates during the golden age, but doesn't just focus on those who operated out of Nassau.
  • Gerard Villegas
    A great history of the more well-known figures of piracy like Captain Morgan and Blackbeard. The book details the race for exploration between Spain and England and how each was affected by both political and economic motivations. Though it touches upon its application to modern day piracy, it does leave out some other influential pirates like Mary Read and Anne Bonnie. Still, a good nonfiction book nonetheless.
  • Ti.Me
    Extremely well-researched and informative, this work could be used as a textbook on the subject. As entertainment, the book falls short, meandering on, slowly dripping trails of facts, with the feel of a never-ending reading assignment.
  • Carolyn Davis
    Eric Jay Dolin writes entertainingly about many seafaring topics, even unsavory ones, in this case, piracy.. A specialist in ocean life, he also writes about the history of lighthouses, and the questionable joys and misadventures of pursuing PhD. studies. His books are to print what Ken Burns' documentaries are to film.I was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Jamaica. Subsequent to that, I researched many subjects about the West Indies. Black Flags, Blue...
  • Lynn Coulter
    If you've got a drop of salt water in your veins or a thing for Johnny Depp as Capt. Jack Sparrow, you should read Eric Jay Dolin's new book, Black Flags, Blue Waters. There's just something about pirates that seems so romantic and mysterious--although the more I read about them, the more I realize how bloodthirsty and greedy they became, after initially being welcomed to the North American colonies. Dolin also debunked some myths I'd heard (nobo...
  • Urey Patrick
    Interesting... but tedious in large part. I suppose that is a feat in itself, making a history of pirates an exercise in tedium, but as it turnout, that is more historically accurate than the swashbuckling tales of violence and derring-do. There were buckles swashed, and daring deeds done, to be sure... but they were more notable for their infrequent occurrence. Dolin depicts the actualities of pirate economics interwoven within colonial coastal ...
  • Gale
    “Swashbucklers along the Colonial American Coast” This non-fiction book proves a pleasure to read, as it plows its way between the murky waters of pirate lore and seaweed swells of documented facts. Dolin presents a chronological history of piracy mainly in the Caribbean but also around Madagascar. You will sympathize with the Crown’s never-ending battle against privateers-turned-pirates (or perhaps not…), be scandalized by the brutality ...
  • Xzs
    I purchased the book at a reading by the author. I attended the event with several family members, so it was an enjoyable and memorable evening, although none of us was riveted during the presentation. Nonetheless it was evident that the author is an intelligent individual so I was looking forward to reading the book. Although I wouldn’t have sought out the topic had I not attended the author reading. In any event, I thought the book was well w...
  • David Bales
    Enshrined in popular mythology as admirable scamps, (mostly by the imagery in Robert Louis Stevenson's "Treasure Island") pirates--or privateers, if you prefer--were, for lack of a better word, criminals on the high seas. Ordinary trade, commerce and law was thrown overboard as pirates were financed and encouraged by nation-states to attack the trade ships of their enemies. Starting in the late-sixteenth century with Sir Francis Drake, (knighted ...
  • Patrick
    This is an informative and entertaining read, marred only by a few unintentionally comical attempts to reassure readers that racism and sexism among pirates does not (of course) comport with contemporary attitudes. Dolin also points out that while most pirate captains served at the pleasure of their crews, they were not necessarily small-d democrats or students of political theory. The fledgling egalitarianism aboard pirate ships was more pragmat...
  • Patrick SG
    An interesting and complete account of piracy related to English America and those based there. The focus is on English in this case, with emphasis on the 13 original colonies. With that in mind, the story does cover piracy around the world if connected to English America. Its emphasis is on the late 17th and early 18th century and does not address piracy in the Mediterranean like the Barbary Pirates of the late 18th and early 19th centuries as t...
  • Dennis Hogan
    Just finished a work of non-fiction, Black Flags, Blue Waters: The Epic History of America’s Most Notorious Pirates by Eric Jay Dolin. I was surprised to learn that pirates were surprisingly popular in the American colonies in the 17th century. Pirates supplied a lot of hard to get items and more importantly infused much needed hard currency into the economic system; in fact, there were times that pirate gold and silver provided at least half o...
  • A Noel
    Black Flags, Blue Waters is historical non-fiction with the readability of a historical novel. Focused on a sixty year period of piracy in the Americas, and American pirate activity in other parts of the world, it introduces the reasons why pirates were welcomed in some parts of the Americas, as well as international political responses to American pirate activity. There are also multiple discussions on how people of African descent in the Americ...
  • Socraticgadfly
    A good basic-level demythologized history of pirates and piracy in colonial America and the Caribbean, with occasional references beyond, to India-area piracy.If you approach this as a basic-level book, and not massive bios of individual pirates, and as being very strong in its demythologizing, which is good, you'll see this as a five-star book within that framework.Dolin also discusses reasons beyond greed of colonial officials while pirates wer...
  • Andrew Singer
    Eric Jay Dolin has done it again. He has brought to life a piece of our history in a unique, engaging, and learned way. I have read my fair share about pirates and the history of America. This being said, I had no idea the significance of piracy as an American issue. I had always thought of it, really, as an issue that affected other parts of the globe--the Caribbean mostly, but also the Indian Ocean and Asia. To learn not only how embedded pirac...
  • Nikki
    Pirates are so interesting. They are a fairly consistent part of pop culture, every kid is familiar with at least one pirate, fiction or otherwise. This book did a good job of diving in on the history of pirates as related to America. A lot of time is spent on the men, ships, and routes based out of or in other ways interacting heavily with the colonies. I thought it was neat to learn about that relationship, how pirates were basically on friendl...
  • Woflmao
    This is an easy to read account of the history of pirates based in the Carribean and North America. Well-suited for anyone interested in getting a first introduction to the subject. The structure of the book is chronological, where the main narrative follows the tales of particular pirates, which serve to illustrate the general events of the times. This way the book is certainly more entertaining than a sober historical account of what happened w...
  • Charlie
    The unique focus on the North American colonies was interesting. The book goes into great detail about the political and economic factors that made the Golden Age pirates so successful in evading the law and the records of trials and corrupt politicians made for intriguing reading. I also enjoyed the degree to which the author challenged some of the details from Johnson's general history, something other pirate history books glossed over.
  • Robert
    This is a refreshingly realistic history of pirates in the American colonies. Dolin describes the path that each featured Pirate took from innocence to treachery, riches to ruin. Embraced by some early colonists many walked a thin line between privateering and pirating. Dolin finishes up with the adventures of the sadistic Edward Low, who terrorized New England’s waters. These incredible tales are the real deal, this is not a Hollywood fantasy.
  • Jdimona
    This is a terrific book- engagingly written and tells the story of an important period of history of the colonies that became the United States, as seen through the lens of global piracy on the colonial coasts and the high seas. Dolin has meticulously researched this and presents a very balanced assessment - just a lot of fun to read I recommend it to you if you like history, seafaring tales, pirates and treasure - what's not to like? Joe
  • Chris Laimit
    Read this book if you want the truth about pirates in our history. While Hollywood charms us with wild tales about pirates, they miss the truth while telling their tale! You may be surprised as I was while learning the truth about pirates. Mr. Dolin weaves the history of pirates with a style that is engaging and keeps the reader turning the pages.
  • Kenneth
    I picked this up as a light read between two weightier tomes and it was what I wanted. The book focuses on pirates from or who plied their trade in what would become the United States. It's a good narrative history and some of the tales are very memorable. It's not a deep dive, it's not an adventure tale, it's a nice easy read on an in interesting subject.
  • Brett Van Gaasbeek
    The book is interesting at times, but drags through some of the parts and makes it very difficult to get into and interested in the subjects. The book tends to focus on minutiae of the pirate culture instead of telling tales of the pirate leaders and their crews in detail. I guess I expected a little more narrative history out of this subject.