Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Enter a promotion code
or gift card
 
 
 

Try it free

Sample the beginning of this book for free

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Anybody can read Kindle books—even without a Kindle device—with the FREE Kindle app for smartphones, tablets and computers.
Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Color:
Image not available

To view this video download Flash Player

 

John Adams [Kindle Edition]

David McCullough
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,158 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $20.00
Kindle Price: $9.99
You Save: $10.01 (50%)
Sold by: Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc

Whispersync for Voice

Now you can switch back and forth between reading the Kindle book and listening to the Audible audiobook. Learn more or scan your Kindle library to find matching professional narration for the Kindle books you already own.

Add the professional narration of John Adams for a reduced price of $11.99 after you buy this Kindle book.

Award-Winning Books
See winners of the Pulitzer Prize, National Book Awards, Edgar Awards, James Beard Foundation Awards and more in our Book Awards store.

Book Description

The Pulitzer Prize–winning, bestselling biography of America’s founding father and second president that was the basis for the acclaimed HBO series, brilliantly told by master historian David McCullough.

In this powerful, epic biography, David McCullough unfolds the adventurous life journey of John Adams, the brilliant, fiercely independent, often irascible, always honest Yankee patriot who spared nothing in his zeal for the American Revolution; who rose to become the second president of the United States and saved the country from blundering into an unnecessary war; who was learned beyond all but a few and regarded by some as “out of his senses”; and whose marriage to the wise and valiant Abigail Adams is one of the moving love stories in American history.

This is history on a grand scale—a book about politics and war and social issues, but also about human nature, love, religious faith, virtue, ambition, friendship, and betrayal, and the far-reaching consequences of noble ideas. Above all, John Adams is an enthralling, often surprising story of one of the most important and fascinating Americans who ever lived.

Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought


Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Left to his own devices, John Adams might have lived out his days as a Massachusetts country lawyer, devoted to his family and friends. As it was, events swiftly overtook him, and Adams--who, David McCullough writes, was "not a man of the world" and not fond of politics--came to greatness as the second president of the United States, and one of the most distinguished of a generation of revolutionary leaders. He found reason to dislike sectarian wrangling even more in the aftermath of war, when Federalist and anti-Federalist factions vied bitterly for power, introducing scandal into an administration beset by other difficulties--including pirates on the high seas, conflict with France and England, and all the public controversy attendant in building a nation.

Overshadowed by the lustrous presidents Washington and Jefferson, who bracketed his tenure in office, Adams emerges from McCullough's brilliant biography as a truly heroic figure--not only for his significant role in the American Revolution but also for maintaining his personal integrity in its strife-filled aftermath. McCullough spends much of his narrative examining the troubled friendship between Adams and Jefferson, who had in common a love for books and ideas but differed on almost every other imaginable point. Reading his pages, it is easy to imagine the two as alter egos. (Strangely, both died on the same day, the 50th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence.) But McCullough also considers Adams in his own light, and the portrait that emerges is altogether fascinating. --Gregory McNamee

From Publishers Weekly

Here a preeminent master of narrative history takes on the most fascinating of our founders to create a benchmark for all Adams biographers. With a keen eye for telling detail and a master storyteller's instinct for human interest, McCullough (Truman; Mornings on Horseback) resurrects the great Federalist (1735-1826), revealing in particular his restrained, sometimes off-putting disposition, as well as his political guile. The events McCullough recounts are well-known, but with his astute marshaling of facts, the author surpasses previous biographers in depicting Adams's years at Harvard, his early public life in Boston and his role in the first Continental Congress, where he helped shape the philosophical basis for the Revolution. McCullough also makes vivid Adams's actions in the second Congress, during which he was the first to propose George Washington to command the new Continental Army. Later on, we see Adams bickering with Tom Paine's plan for government as suggested in Common Sense, helping push through the draft for the Declaration of Independence penned by his longtime friend and frequent rival, Thomas Jefferson, and serving as commissioner to France and envoy to the Court of St. James's. The author is likewise brilliant in portraying Adams's complex relationship with Jefferson, who ousted him from the White House in 1800 and with whom he would share a remarkable death date 26 years later: July 4, 1826, 50 years to the day after the signing of the Declaration. (June) Forecast: Joseph Ellis has shown us the Founding Fathers can be bestsellers, and S&S knows it has a winner: first printing is 350,000 copies, and McCullough will go on a 15-city tour; both Book-of-the-Month Club and the History Book Club have taken this book as a selection.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.


Product Details

  • File Size: 56471 KB
  • Print Length: 752 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster; 1st Touchstone edition (May 22, 2001)
  • Sold by: Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B000FC0QHA
  • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #11,937 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
  •  Would you like to give feedback on images?


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
288 of 294 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover
My curiousity in John Adams first piqued by repeatedly in my youth watching the musical "1776" (of which Adams is the main character), I looked forward anxiously to McCullough's latest take on America's 2nd President. It didn't hurt that McCullough's bio "Truman" is still perhaps my favorite political biography of them all. With all these high expectations, I was waiting for my hopes to be dashed. But, nothing could be further from the truth.
"Adams" is a terrific piece of work. Relying on a treasure trove of letters and correspondence written by Adams and his tremendous wife Abigail (both of whom were compulsive/obsessive writers), McCullough replays the history of the signing of the Declaration of Independence, the Washington Presidency and Adams's tumultuous four years as President with vibrant storytelling and just the right amount of detail without getting weighed down.
In MuCullough's view, Adams was a brilliant, determined, forthright, nonpartisan, stubborn politician who was unabashedly American and ambitious for higher office only to the point that public service (according to Adams) was the greatest calling of all.
Anybody looking for a line by line history of America's birth, from 1776 to 1800, will probably be disappointed. McCullough skips over the details of the American Revolution and the drafting of the Constitution. He instead tracks the diplomatic journeys of Adams, who travels to England, France and Holland with Ben Franklin and Thomas Jefferson (both occasionally) as they try to negotiate various peace and commercial treaties.
The best surprise of the book? Abigail Adams, an amazing woman living entirely ahead of her time.
Read more ›
Was this review helpful to you?
110 of 116 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the Brothers October 20, 2001
Format:Hardcover
"In the cold...New England winter, two men on horseback traveled the coast road below Boston, heading north. The temperature, according to records kept by Adams' former professor of science at Harvard, John Winthrop, was in the low twenties."
One can almost hear the amiable yet dramatic tones of historian David McCullough, punctuated by paintings of New England blizzards and the sound of hoofbeats. (McCullough is a frequent narrator of documentaries, notably those of Ken Burns.) McCullough's familiar cadence resounds through this extremely well written best-seller. The details never slow the reading or obscure the portrait; instead, source materials (much of it from the Adams' personal letters) illuminate and concretize his subject. McCullough writes clearly, forcefully, and with an ear for detail, humor, and anecdote.
Overall this is a flattering portrait of Adams' longtime service as lawyer, revolutionary, writer and philosopher, diplomat, politician, and farmer. The book could well have been subtitled: "An Appreciation," both because Adams demonstrates so much to admire (including integrity, erudition, patriotism, work ethic, and courage) and because McCullough either doesn't criticize Adams or couches his disapproval by leaving some issues open.
Some readers may suspect a positive bias. Criticized and embattled by Jefferson, Madison, and Hamilton--and by the libelous hyperbole of opposition newspapers and rivals--Adams takes on an almost martyr-like persona. To test McCullough's balance, one must read other books on both the Founders and the political culture of the times.
Read more ›
Was this review helpful to you?
69 of 76 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover
This book is an outstanding success on so many levels. The writing is most lyrical and beautiful...there is not one wasted word in the whole book. It's a book that is difficult to put down for the night.
Perhaps the greatest success of the book is the correction of many John Adams stereotypes. In this book you meet a John Adams who is a delightful wit, a man deeply in love with his nation, and more-so with his wife. Mr. McCullough also gives Abigail Adams her due as a most delightful person and one of the most important women in our history. The love the couple shared is as deep a love as humans are possible of giving and receiving, and that love is radiated to you from the pages of this book.
A warrning to Jefferson fanatics...during his research, I think McCullough, perhaps more than anybody else, gained a true understanding of Thomas Jefferson and has done the nearly impossible...portraying Jefferson as a human being. As a human being, Jefferson loses some of his shine. As a human being, john Adams shines even brighter.
Mr. McCullough has done with John Adams what he did with Harry Truman a few years ago...he has restored the lustre of a truly great and underrated American. I hope that preparing this book gave Mr. McCullough as much pleasure as I had reading it.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
195 of 226 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars McCullough's kindlier-gentler Adams May 23, 2001
Format:Hardcover
Although it is not his best book, McCullough largely (not to say "hugely," a sloppy modifier for which he has a repetitive weakness) delivers on the high expectations for his thick biography of the Braintree Sage. His research is good and he has skillfully employed the two best aspects of John Adams' life in his account: Adams' own voluminous, revealing writings and his marriage to the irresistible Abigail. His accounts of Adams' finest hours--the creation of the Declaration of Independence and his refusal to declare war against France in 1798--are dramatically structured and emotionally moving. The only real quibble with his treatment of the long-underappreciated Adams is that, like Catherine Drinker Bowen two generations ago (check out her bodice-heaving account of John & Abby's courtship in "John Adams & the American Revolution")McCullough seems to have yielded to the impulse to soften the edges of the oft-curmudgeonly Adams. It wasn't just his principled character that left his life littered with political enemies, and McCullough downplays his hero's rough edges in his quest to make John Adams another Trumanesque Man Of The People. It's a stirring read, though, and may lead lucky readers back to Adams' own writings, most especially the Autobiography, Diary and his correspondence with Thomas Jefferson.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
Informative regarding Adams life and the times Especilly the american revolution and Adams part in the declaration of independence and forming of the united states
Published 7 days ago by michael salamone
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful book about a wonderful man.
Nobody does this better than D avid McCullough. I will read everything he has written. don't miss his Panama C
Canal book.
Published 8 days ago by T. Renken
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book on a Founding Father
Outstanding book about an amazing founding father. Hated to finish it. The HBO miniseries based on this book is excellent as well.
Published 9 days ago by Stephen L Britt
5.0 out of 5 stars Great biography
Terrific book on one of the USA 's greatest presidents. Thought provoking well researched, and a delight to read. Great for anyone with even a passing interest in history
Published 14 days ago by Dguilleminault
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended
I had heard this book praised as "brilliant" so many times that I honestly had my doubts about it by the time I read it. However, it fully lived up to all the hype. Read more
Published 14 days ago by A. Reader
5.0 out of 5 stars An extrodinary Book
This Book is special because is so factual and well documented, yet has the qualities of a novel. McCullough uses official and personal correspondence to describe the events and... Read more
Published 21 days ago by terry parish
1.0 out of 5 stars Not what I expected.
This version cut a huge chunk of the middle of the book which I did not expect from the description. People should be warned that this is not a complete audio version. Read more
Published 24 days ago by Mary Gail Scott
5.0 out of 5 stars John Adams
If you are at all interested in learning about our Founding Fathers and the beginnings of the United States of America, you will have to admit to the necessity of reading in-depth... Read more
Published 24 days ago by Erik Peterson
5.0 out of 5 stars The Bookschlepper Recommends
(read parts 1 & 2, pre-presidency). This is a excellent look at a little-known founding father and a wonderfully detailed account of Philadelphia, Paris, London and Amsterdam in... Read more
Published 27 days ago by Jean Sue Libkind
5.0 out of 5 stars IMPORTANT WARNING!!
David McCullough did an outstanding job, bringing to life the life of our second president, unquestionably the voice behind the writing of what he initially called the... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Ed
Search Customer Reviews
Only search this product's reviews

Book Extras from the Shelfari Community

(What's this?)

To add, correct, or read more Book Extras for John Adams , visit Shelfari, an Amazon.com company.


More About the Author

David McCullough has twice received the Pulitzer Prize, for Truman and John Adams, and twice received the National Book Award, for The Path Between the Seas and Mornings on Horseback; His other widely praised books are 1776, Brave Companions, The Great Bridge, and The Johnstown Flood. He has been honored with the National Book Foundation Distinguished Contribution to American Letters Award, the National Humanities Medal, and the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Amazon Author Rankbeta 

(What's this?)

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?



Forums

There are no discussions about this product yet.
Be the first to discuss this product with the community.
Start a new discussion
Topic:
First post:
Prompts for sign-in
 


Customers Who Highlighted This Item Also Highlighted


Look for Similar Items by Category


ARRAY(0xa307e018)