The Notorious Benedict Arnold: A True Story of Adventure, Heroism, & Bravery


  • History related title
  • Author: Steve Sheinkin
  • Age Range: Grades 6-adult
  • Title: The Notorious Benedict Arnold: A True Story of Adventure, Heroism, & Bravery.
  • Publisher: New York :, Roaring Brook Press
  • 2010
  • 337 pages.
  • ISBN: 978-1-59643-486-8
  • Awards: YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction~Horn Book Award for Nonfiction~School Library Journal Best Book~ Horn Book Magazine Fanfare List, Best of 2010 ~ Beacon of Freedom Award~ School Library Journal, Best Children’s
    Books of 2010~ New York Charlotte Award Master List
  • Author’s website:

Benedict Arnold was more than just a traitor, in many ways he was responsible for the success of the American Revolution: both through his military achievements and though the galvanic effect his betrayal had on the country at a crucial moment in the conflict.

In a narrative as exciting as an action film and as gripping as the best spy-thriller, Sheinkin relates the fantastic, improbable and tragic story of America’s greatest revolutionary hero turning into her most reviled traitor. The dynamism of Arnold’s character and Sheinkin’s cinematic writing style make this a compelling story that shines a fresh light on the unlikely success of the American Revolution.

Sheinkin’s fascination with his subject is contagious. His in-depth research and use of primary sources allows us to hear the words of the characters. We even get a glimpse into Benedict Arnold’s love life; he wrote the same maudlin letter to two different women. Sheinkin distills his deep understanding of the subject and produces a compelling, cogent, and often witty, account of the Revolution and Arnold’s remarkable part in it. “Benedict Arnold never could stand inaction. So he decided to invade Canada.” The ending is a tour-de-force.

Front matter includes two relevant maps and contents. Back matter includes extensive source and quotation notes and an index. Sheinkin has helpfully annotated his sources: indicating which were most useful in research, which to read to pursue information on key characters, specific aspects of the Revolution and where to find firsthand accounts.



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