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Kenneth Roberts Books In Order

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Publication Order of Chronicles of Arundel Books

Publication Order of Dowsing Books

Henry Gross and His Dowsing Rod (1951)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Seventh Sense (1953)Description / Buy at Amazon
Water Unlimited (1957)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Publication Order of Non-Fiction Books

Europe's Morning After (1921)Description / Buy at Amazon
Sun Hunting (1922)Description / Buy at Amazon
Why Europe Leaves Home (1922)Description / Buy at Amazon
Concentrated New England (1924)Description / Buy at Amazon
Black Magic (1924)Description / Buy at Amazon
Florida Loafing (1925)Description / Buy at Amazon
For Authors Only and Other Gloomy Essays (1935)Description / Buy at Amazon
It Must Be Your Tonsils (1936)Description / Buy at Amazon
Trending into Maine (1938)Description / Buy at Amazon
March To Quebec (1938)Description / Buy at Amazon
Moreau de St. Mery's American Journey (1947)Description / Buy at Amazon
I Wanted to Write (1949)Description / Buy at Amazon
Battle of Cowpens (1956)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Collections

The Kenneth Roberts Reader (1945)Description / Buy at Amazon

Kenneth Roberts
Kenneth Lewis Roberts was born in Kennebunk, Maine on December 8, 1885, and was an American writer of historical novels. First he worked as a journalist, initially known nationally for his work with the Saturday Evening Post from 1919 until 1928, before he became a popular novelist.

He focused on regionalist historical fiction, and he typically wrote about his native state of Maine and its terrain as well as about some of the other upper New England scenes and states.

Kenneth graduated from Cornell University in the year 1908, where he wrote the lyrics for two of Cornell’s fight songs, which includes “Fight for Cornell”. He was even a member of the Quill and Dagger society. Later on he was awarded honorary doctorates from three New England colleges: Middlebury College (in Middlebury, Vermont), Dartmouth College (in Hanover, New Hampshire), and Colby College (in Waterville, Maine).

After he graduated, he worked for as a newspaperman eight years for the Boston Post. In the year 1917, he enlisted in the US army for World War I, however he ended up being a lieutenant in the intelligence section of the American Expeditionary Force Siberia in the Russian Civil War rather than going up to the front in Europe.

The contacts he ended up making while serving in this role helped him in becoming a European correspondent for the Saturday Evening Post after the war. It was here that he became the very first American journalist that covered the 1923 Beer Hall Putsch, which was Adolf Hitler’s failed attempt to seize power.

A neighbor in Kennebunkport, Maine, who was named Booth Tarkington, convinced him that he’d never find the necessary time to succeed as a novelist while also working as a journalist, and Tarkington agreed to help Kenneth out by editing his early novels.

Even though he continued selling a few essays to the Post after that, his next few years were dedicated, in large part, to writing historical fiction. Ultimately, Tarkington went on to edit every single one of Roberts’ historical novels through “Oliver Wiswell”, and Roberts said that he offered Tarkington a co-writing credit both on “Oliver” and “Northwest Passage” because of the massive amounts of revisions that Tarkington made to each novel. These two novels and “Rabble in Arms” are each dedicated to Tarkington, and he continued to assist Kenneth up until his death.

His historical fiction typically focused on rehabilitating unpopular causes and persons in American history. One of the key characters in “Arundel” and “Rabble in Arms” is the American officer and eventual traitor Benedict Arnold, with Kenneth focusing on Arnold’s expedition to Quebec and the Battle of Quebec in the first and the Battle of Valcour Island, the Battles of Saratoga, and the Saratoga campaign in the second one.

At the same time, the hero of “Northwest Passage” was Major Robert Rogers and the Rogers’ Rangers, even though Rogers fought on the British side during the American Revolutionary War.

During Kenneth’s research into Major Rogers, his researcher found transcripts of both of Rogers’ courts-martial (one time as the accuser and the other as the accused), which were thought to have been lost for more than a century, and these were published in the second volume of a two volume release of “Northwest Passage”.

The Saturday Evening Post serialized “Northwest Passage” in 1936 and 1937. As a result of the serialization’s success, the book, when it was published, became the second bestselling novel of 1937 and fifth best for the year of 1938.

Kenneth died at the age of 71 on July 21, 1957 in Kennebunkport, Maine.

“Northwest Passage” is a stand alone novel that was released in the year 1937. Told through the eyes of Langdon Towne, the primary character, much of the novel centers around the exploits and the character of Robert Rogers, who is the leader of Rogers’ Rangers, who were this colonial fighting force that battled the British during the French and Indian War.

Structurally, this novel is divided into halves. The first is carefully researched and is a day-by-day recreation of the raid by the Rangers on the Indian village at Saint-Francois-du-Lac, Quebec (or Saint Francis to the American troops), a settlement of an American Indian tribe, called the Abenakis.

The second half of the book covers Rogers’ later life in Fort Michilimackinac, Michigan and London, England. Kenneth’s choice to cover the material in the novel over two distinct halves followed the actual trajectory of Rogers’ actual life.

“Oliver Wiswell” is a stand alone novel that was released in the year 1940. Kenneth depicts a very different side to tale about the American Revolution: that of those colonists that supported the British monarchy, known as the loyalists.

Spanning from 1775 until 1783, this traces the adventures of one Yale student that is deeply loyal to the established government in the colonies. This is a wonderfully far ranging book is packed with sudden flights, battles, escapes, massacres, intrigue, exile, and romance. All while following Wiswell, who was a spy for Sir William Howell (the Commander in Chief of the British Armies) on Long Island, as well as in London and Paris.

He captures a sloop single-handedly and joins with Benedict Arnold against the American revolutionaries of the southern colonies. Oliver did no less than challenge the accepted perceptions of any of the loyalists. Even though they’ve been branded by history as mere cowardly traitors, many of them were men of rather strong convictions and fierce courage, sometimes defeating triple their number of militiamen and Continental troops in battle.

With vivid descriptions and historical details, Kenneth explores the minds and hearts of those women and men that opposed the Revolution.

“Lydia Bailey” is a stand alone novel that was released in the year 1947. Africa and Haiti, and the early United States; outlining the Haitians battle for freedom as seen through the eyes of just a single man.

This 1947 outing features Albion Hamlin, who arrives in Boston in the year 1800 to defend a man being accused of violating the Alien and Sedition Act. Hamilin, in a whirlwind of action, gets jailed, then is able to escape to Haiti to find Lydia Bailey, his client’s daughter, with whom he’s fallen in love with just by looking at her portrait.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Kenneth Roberts

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