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Richard M. Nixon: The American Presidents Series: The 37th President, 1969-1974 (American Presidents (Times)) 1st (first) Edition by Drew, Elizabeth published by Times Books (2007) Hardcover – January 1, 0001


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Product Details

  • Hardcover
  • Publisher: Times Books; 1ST edition (0001)
  • ASIN: B00E31QD1W
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)

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Customer Reviews

I read all the Biographies of the Presidents by way of the Presidential series.
Frank Anderson
Reading this book you get the sense that Nixon didn't do anything good for this country.
Mark Randall
Instead the book devolves into personal attacks and inane theories from the author.
Scott M. Jeffers

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Carl Peltoniemi on October 22, 2007
Format: Hardcover
It's unfortunate that Elizabeth Drew refers to Monica Crowley as a Watergate-era aide in this book. Ms. Crowley worked for Nixon as an aide in the Nineties, when she was in her twenties. She would have been around five or six years old, had she worked for Nixon when he was president. Such a careless mistake makes me cautious about Drew's research methods, and gives ammunition to her critics.
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26 of 36 people found the following review helpful By Kevin M Quigg VINE VOICE on August 9, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Even thirty years after his presidency and fourteen after his death, Richard Nixon is still a controversial leader. Drew who lived through Watergate can't seem to get past the anger she feels toward Nixon. Nixon's presidency was one of brillance and stupidity. Brilliance in his pragmatic handling of domestice issues and his careful handling of foreign policy, and stupidity in creating a wall around himself with bad advisors and then committing crimes. Give credit where credit is due, but Drew states that Nixon, although smart, was not really a good politician. One comment is very telling. Nixon's first cabinet did not have stellar quality, because there were no good quality people there. Then Drew goes on to tell the Eastern establishment was not represented in this cabinet. Maybe, just maybe Nixon was right when he talked of the elitist Eastern establishment because it is obvious Drew is from this group, being a former writer for the New Yorker.

Another telling comment is the drug charge brought up in The Arrogance of Power. She then tells how Nixon probably took drugs, along with being drunk on most nights. Again, I have issues with both the objectivity of the drug charges. With other writers, it is obvious Nixon was under tremendous strains and used drink as an escape clause during this time. However, I don't think he was an alcholic. I guess Drew just wanted to rip down this man once more and the American President series let her.

This series is fine. I learned a lot about the American Presidents. It was sad that Drew had to write on Nixon. She proved Nixon's theory that the Left took the sword and twisted it. Unfortunately Nixon is dead. He had brillant moments in foreign policy. He also did stupid and criminal things that resulted in his resignation from the American presidency. Drew is not an objective author.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Zachary Koenig on June 9, 2014
Format: Hardcover
This installment is not one of the finest efforts put out by the American Presidents series, for two primary reasons:

1. It is very clear that author Elizabeth Drew has a severe distaste for Nixon. I understand (and appreciate) that everyone has the right to his/her own opinion, but I wish there was SOMETHING in this book that showed Nixon in a favorable light. Was he a bad President? Yes, I think so too. But, there had to be reasons why he was elected not once but twice! Drew never discusses anything like that. Either Nixon was indeed the worst President of all-time, or Drew wrote a very biased book. There is no middle ground.

2. I didn't particularly care for the way this installment was organized. I like a lot of focus on "the man", and Drew doesn't give a whole lot of them. There are some insights here into Nixon's personality, to be sure, but the majority of the book is devoted to administration matters. Those tend to be the type of books in this series that I don't enjoy quite as much. For example, if I wanted loads of detail about Nixon's dealings with "Red China", I would have checked out a book about that very topic. When I read American Presidents series books, I want an overview of the man, a little bit about his past, and the key topics of his time in office.

Overall, then, I was disappointed by this biography of President Richard Nixon. I did glean some useful information about him from the book, but mostly it felt a bit dry and devoid of the type of passion that often defines this series. Almost like the author was trying to prove the thesis "why Nixon was a terrible President" instead of the more traditional "who was President Nixon and what did he do for this country".
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26 of 37 people found the following review helpful By Mark Randall on June 11, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Aside from maybe Tom Wicker's volume about Dwight D. Eisenhower, this book is by far the worst in the series. You needn't look hard to find the obvious biases throughout. Ms. Drew is an unapologetic Nixon hater and has been her entire career. Reading this book you get the sense that Nixon didn't do anything good for this country. It's the same nonsense that mars a lot of the earlier literature about Nixon. Ms. Drew misses a chance to put her previous thoughts about Nixon aside and re-examine his career which is what the most recent volumes and scholars about Nixon are discovering. Instead, she can't let go of Watergate. Other volumes, like the one written by John Dean about Warren Harding, took the time to do their homework and actually came up with some conclusions that challenged earlier perceived notions and really added to our understanding of the men who have held the office. Not drew. Instead we get the same old tired, lame and factually incorrect Nixon bashing. It's not surprising given Schlesinger's own hatred for Nixon, but selecting Drew to write this book was a disservice to this series. This is a truly unworthy entry in an otherwise good series about our presidents.
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