I was not quite as enamored with this one as I was with Assassination Vacation. I don’t blame Vowell — she does her best here, and quite a few lines made me laugh out loud — it was just not a gripping subject for me.
“I’m always disappointed when I see the word ‘Puritan’ tossed around as shorthand for a bunch of generic, boring, stupid, judgmental killjoys. Because to me, they are very specific, fascinating, sometimes brilliant, judgmental killjoys who rarely agreed on anything except that Catholics are going to Hell. ”
The Wordy Shipmates is an exploration of the Puritans who first settled in America — who they were (particularly their leaders), what motivated them, what they believed. It’s well researched, and Vowell adds in her usual asides that spiced things up — I did really like how she annotated certain letters with her own observations — but overall, I guess the Puritans just don’t do it for me.