Pillar of Fire: America in the King Years 1963-65 (Paperback)

America in the King Years 1963-65

By Taylor Branch

Simon & Schuster, 9780684848099, 768pp.

Publication Date: January 20, 1999



From Pulitzer Prize-winning author Taylor Branch, the second part of his epic trilogy on the American Civil Rights Movement.

In the second volume of his three-part history, a monumental trilogy that began with Parting the Waters, winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award, Taylor Branch portrays the Civil Rights Movement at its zenith, recounting the climactic struggles as they commanded the national stage.

Praise For Pillar of Fire: America in the King Years 1963-65

Richard Bernstein
The New York Times

By the time you have finished [Pillar of Fire], you feel almost as if you have relieved the era, not just read about it.

James Goodman
The Boston Globe

This is jet-propelled history.

Jeff Shesol
The Washington Post

Politics and personalities, ambition and imagination, triumph and tragedy.

David M. Shribman
The Wall Street Journal

One part biography, one part history, one part elegy...a vast panorama...powerful.

Jon Meacham

Pillar of Fire is a magisterial history of one of the most tumultuous periods in postwar America. Branch's storytelling is strong, his storytelling colorful. Reading Branch, it is easier to see why even the most remarkable revolutions are never complete.

Alan Wolfe
The New York Times Book Review

As he did in Parting the Waters, Branch brings to these events both a passion for their detail and a recognition of their larger historical significance.

Scott Ellsworth
The Oregonian

Magnificent...the birth of a masterwork akin to Carl Sandburg's Lincoln or Shelby Foote's Civil War.

Ray Jenkins
The Baltimore Sun

Branch has an uncanny ability to penetrate the most obscure nooks and crannies of the past to provide a whole new perpective on the Sixties...

Bill Maxwell
St. Petersburg Times

Pillar of Fire, a history of symbiosis and epiphany, records King's vision and the disparate moral currents that forced America to redefine itslef in light of its failures to live up to its own principles of freedom.

Trevor Coleman
Detroit Free Press

The strength of Pillar of Fire lies in Branch's unsurpassed ability to bring the reader into the moment, enabling one to almost feel the tension of the times.