Michael Beschloss has brought us a brilliantly readable and inspiring saga about crucial times in America's history when a courageous President dramatically changed the future of the United States.
With surprising new sources and a dazzling command of history and human character, Beschloss brings to life these flawed, complex men -- and their wives, families, friends and foes. Never have we had a more intimate, behind-the-scenes view of Presidents coping with the supreme dilemmas of their lives.
You will be in the room with the private George Washington, braving threats of impeachment and assassination to make peace with England. John Adams, incurring his party's "unrelenting hatred" by refusing to fight France and warning his enemies, "Great is the guilt of an unnecessary war." Andrew Jackson, in a death struggle against the corrupt Bank of the United States. Abraham Lincoln, risking his Presidency to insist that slaves be freed.
Beschloss also shows us Theodore Roosevelt, taunting J. P. Morgan and the Wall Street leaders who dominated his party. Franklin Roosevelt, defying the isolationists -- and maybe the law -- to stop Adolf Hitler. Harry Truman, risking a walkout by top officials to recognize a Jewish state. John Kennedy, the belated champion of civil rights, complaining that he has cost himself a second term. And finally, two hundred years after Washington, Ronald Reagan, irking some of his oldest backers to seek an end to the Cold War.
As Beschloss shows in this gripping and important book, none of these Presidents was eager to incur ridicule, vilification or threats of political destruction and even assassination. But in the end, bolstered by friends and family, hidden private beliefs and, sometimes, religious faith, each ultimately proved himself to be, in Andrew Jackson's words, "born for the storm."
a speedy death to general washington!
kick this treaty to hell!
the damnedest liar
he may retire with undiminish'd glory
rivalries irritated to madness
oh, that i was a soldier!
rocks and quicksands on all sides
the most splendid diamond in my crown
i will kill it!
not a man to be forced
i was born for the storm
who would have had the courage?
i am going to be beaten
too angelic for this devilish rebellion
a well-meaning baboon
the country will be saved
i see dynamite
a rough-and-tumble man
i upset them all
we must protect the chief!
salute your caesar?
we have avoided a putsch
no people except the hebrews
the right place at the right time
how could this have happened?
i am cyrus!
they never show their passion
go get him, johnny boy!
it's going to be a civil war
a man has to take a stand
we win and they lose!
it left me greatly depressed
don't worry that i've lost my bearings
a miracle has taken place