I have read all of the volumes thus far issued in the Oxford History of the United States. Without exception, they have been brilliantly researched, masterfully written and exceptionally explanatory of the period of history with which they dealt as witnessed by their 4 or 5 cumulative Pulitzer prizes). The Empire of Liberty is sadly the exception that proves the rule. Its author has no feel for the United States, marshalls his facts not by how illustrative they may be of the period he is describing, but by how little likelihood we are to know of them, and writes with a condescension for the characters he is describing that is painful to read. His use of the word "middling" to describe the great American middle class is not only non-historical, it is grating and intrusive. I struggled to get through this volume and would not recommend it.