Serena Zabin

Cover The Boston Massacre: A Family History

Named one of Saturday Evening Post’s 10 Books for the New Year and an Amazon Best Book of February 2020

“…historical accuracy and human understanding require coming down from the high ground and seeing people in all their complexity. Serena Zabin’s rich and highly enjoyable book does just that…” – Kathleen DuVal, Wall Street Journal

a lively gem of a book that expands our views of early-modern military life, pre-revolutionary Boston, and, in turn, the American Revolution.” – Marjoleine Kars, Washington Post

Zabin’s sense of humor, her interest in exploring historical crannies others have ignored, and a firm grasp of human behavior make The Boston Massacre a lively and convincing history that illuminates an oft-cited incident in a new and exhilarating way.” – Adrian Liang, Amazon Book Review

“Penetrating and lyrical, Zabin’s Boston Massacre offers startling revelations on every page. To read this “family history” is to tread the cobbled streets of eighteenth-century British America, peering into shops, barracks, bedrooms, and government halls along the way. Zabin’s account ripples far beyond Boston on the vexed night of March 5, 1770, offering fresh understandings of the cause of liberty and its consequences. The American Revolution—indeed, early modern warfare itself—will never look the same.” 

Jane Kamensky, Trumbull Professor of American History, Harvard University, and author of A Revolution in Color:  The World of John Singleton Copley

“An intimate, complex, and moving picture of the friendships and family connections between Britons and Bostonians, in the throes of revolutionary change. Zabin’s eloquent account illuminates the ways in which the actors in this nation-making and empire-breaking drama experienced the rupture and transformation of the world they made together.” 

Peter S. Onuf, author, with Annette Gordon-Reed, of Most Blessed of the Patriarchs:  Thomas Jefferson and the Empire of the Imagination

“This is big-picture history told on a human scale….The Boston Massacre presents stories of kindness and cruelty, celebration and loss, suffering and joy, and enriches our understanding of those whose lives would be shattered when the Revolution severed friendships and divided families. 

Dean Jobb, Washington Independent Review of Books

A compelling history of the Boston Massacre, weaving personal stories together to present a comprehensive view of this turning point incident.

Library Journal

A well-written, thoroughly interesting addition to the social history of the American Colonies.

Kirkus Reviews

Zabin’s engaging history adds nuance and complexity to the political and social aspects of the American Revolution.

Booklist