"By book's end, readers will be fully persuaded that the author's provocative opening salvo...[is] true.... [A] rare humanizing of an icon.... Carton...truly excels at portraying the man himself. A dramatic, expertly paced biography of American history's most problematic figure." -- Kirkus Reviews (starred)
"No person gave more in the struggle for the freedom and justice of black people than John Brown. No book tells the story of his life like Patriotic Treason. All Americans should read this book. It is thoroughly researched and gracefully written. Patriotic Treason is a brilliant interpretation of Brown's vocation to save the soul of America."
-- James H. Cone, Briggs Distinguished Professor of Theology, Union Theological Seminary, author of Martin & Malcolm & America
"In Evan Carton's well-researched book, crafted with passion, flair, and imagination, John Brown's raid on Harpers Ferry is not over. It rises from this biography, written in a nearly novelistic style, as both a great story and a political warning in our own time against the cynical misuses of history by the right wing. This is historical literature, a moving portrait of the great and troubling abolitionist's place in the American spirit. Via Thoreau, and unapologetically, Carton gives us Brown as America's model of 'action from principle.'"
-- David W. Blight, Yale University, and author of the Bancroft Prize-winning Race and Reunion: The Civil War in American Memory
"This meticulously researched work is informative, even for those who have read a great deal about the nation as it failed to come to grips with slavery. Carton paints a vivid portrait of John Brown, a complex, passionate, charismatic, idealistic man. What should a man of conscience do in the face of great evil being perpetrated by his nation? This question has been posed at crucial junctures in the history of the United States, and it is central in Patriotic Treason, Evan Carton's excellent biography of John Brown." -Dr. James Forbes, Senior Minister, The Riverside Church, author of The Holy Spirit and Preaching
"John Brown, traitor to a pro-slavery government, patriot to freedom, needs now more than ever to be understood as Evan Carton here so brilliantly portrays him-as the militant, revolutionary expression of America's long-delayed commitment to equality and social justice." -- Albert J. von Frank, author of The Trials of Anthony Burns: Freedom and Slavery in Emerson's Boston
"[An] absorbing and inspiring . . . biography. . . . Carton usefully sets Brown's abolitionism against the backdrop of a larger American story . . . [and] writes with great admiration for his subject. His Brown is a hero who set the nation on a road to justice that we are traveling still." -- Publishers Weekly
"Drawing on an impressive collection of archival sources and secondary studies, he highlights Brown's dramatic rhetoric. . . . [T]his is a compelling biography. . . . [I]t will be greatly enjoyed by the casual reader. . . . [R]ecommended for larger public libraries." -- Library Journal
"With the storytelling gifts of a novelist, Carton shows how the violence of the pro-slavery forces tipped the scales toward violence for the abolitionist cause and how Brown's violent raid then pushed the south toward the 'fire-eating secessionists' and ultimately civil war." -- Pages
"[a] thoughtful, well-researched new biography of Brown." -- AmericanHeritage.com