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Mayor Corning: Albany Icon, Albany Enigma Paperback – September 7, 2007
Even for those readers unfamiliar with either the man or the city he ran, Mayor Corning makes for interesting reading. Not only is Corning himself a fascinating character--his nearly lifelong relationship with a woman not his wife is refreshingly ambiguous in this age of in-your-face political sex scandal--but the inner workings of Albany politics he describes hark back to an earlier era of Tammany Hall-style corruption, fraud, and influence peddling, the likes of which are seldom seen today. Interesting characters, compelling stories, and a healthy dose of shady dealing--Mayor Corning has it all. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
This is an important book for Albany, for anyone interested in political power. from the Introduction by William Kennedy
a highly readable, meticulously researched and illuminating history of some fascinating and shadowy byways in the politics of the Empire State. The New York Times Book Review
Grondahl evokes his subject with novelistic assurance. The New Yorker
New York named the tallest building in the state north of the Big Apple Corning Tower because it was an apt description of the stature of Mayor Corning. Paul Grondahl s book makes this clear: it is detailed, accurate and eminently readable. Mario M. Cuomo
Mayor Corning is a biographical feast. Here journalism at its finest merges with the art of the novelist. The book indeed resembles a series of fascinating, interlocking novellas. R. W. B. Lewis, author of Edith Wharton: A Biography"
More About the Author
He is the author of several books, including the critically acclaimed "Mayor Corning: Albany Icon, Albany Enigma" and "I Rose like a Rocket: The Political Education of Theodore Roosevelt." He was born in 1959 in Tacoma, Wash. and earned a bachelor's degree in English literature from the University of Puget Sound and a master's in English literature from the University at Albany. He has appeared on C-SPAN's "About Books" and has been named Author of the Year by the Albany Public Library and Guilderland Public Library. He is an adjunct professor in the Africana Studies Department at UAlbany, where he teaches a popular course titled "Culture, Diversity & the Human Condition."
Top Customer Reviews
Mr. Grondahl offers his readers a lengthy over 500 page study of Mr. Corning. The volume is accompanied by a fine bibliography and end notes.
Corning was an unsual big city politico, a true American aristocrat a descendant of an old American railroad and banking family, who graduated Groton and Yale, who chose to allign himself with the old line working class Democratic Irish political machine in Albany which under the leadership of Dan McConnel which dominated Albany for most of the 20th century.
This book explores Cornings life and career. We have chapters dedicated to his patrimony, his years at Groton and Yale, his time in the US Army, his lifeas a summer resident in Maine.
We also learn much about his private life his marriage , his 2 children and his second family the Noonan's wife husband and children.After I finished reading this monograph I felt I knew Corning very very well.
While the author certainly does deal with Corning's service as mayor and his potiical life, there are many notable omissions in this otherwise fine study.
We learn very little about the changing landscape of the Albany political scene. Like all cities Albany gained a large Black population in the 1950's . What was the relatioship between Corning and his handlers to this group. This is dealt with in several paragraphs, wheras Corning the sportsman and fisherman gets at least a whole chapter.Read more ›
Grondahl's biography of Corning compares to the great biographies of Robert Caro--about Robert Moses and Lyndon Johnson. Authoritative, full of passion, insightful, and great story well told. Highly recommended!
Grondahl paints a complete picture of the man, and its an entirely readable book.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Very interesting story of this man who was one in a line of important historical figures. Corning was truly an icon. Read morePublished 18 days ago by DAVID HALLORAN
up to chapter 8 p262. interesting and informative. i lived and walked by dan o'connell's birth place often as well as drive by his place on whitehall but didn't know it. Read morePublished on July 12, 2011 by Bill Rundans
As others have noted Paul Grondahl's work is the best study of a man who played a major role in all levels of American politics for nearly half of the twentieth century. Read morePublished on January 19, 2011 by William Mahoney
As one familiar with the author's newspaper work, it came as no surprise that his book would be such a compelling read. I look forward to his next effort.Published on April 1, 1999
I liked the photographs the most. They were the first things I looked for in the book. My dad put my name in it too!Published on December 3, 1998