California – A History
This 370-page summary of California’s history combines textbook-worthy material with a rich narrative of a novel.
The author, University Professor at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, a former state librarian, and resident of both L.A. And San Francisco, infuses his book with well-researched information and a Californian’s appreciation for the state and its people. At the same time, Starr puts California on the global stage and describes both its accomplishments and challenges throughout the years, in a no-nonsense fashion.
Through the examination of California’s beginnings – its Colonial and Mexican years – then the establishment of an American state, industrial revolution, post-WWII suburban growth and, finally, the state’s 21st century affairs, the author seeks to explain the phenomenon of the region’s rapid growth and continuing world-wide influence.
In the preface, Starr wonders, “Where did it come from – this nation-state, the world commonwealth, this California? How did an American state, one in fifty, rise to such global stature, with its $1.5 trillion economy making it, as of 2005, the fifth-ranking economy on the planet?” Readers should have a good idea after reaching for the volume.
An added bonus is the state’s detailed chronology and a list of suggested readings.
The book is recommended for California enthusiasts and visitors, and those looking for a concise, yet informative, chronicle of the state.
Category: GOOD READS