44 of 46 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: Kissinger: A Biography (Hardcover)
This book has sat on my shelf unread for years - I think because I'm somewhat leery of "contemporary" biographies. Just another error in judgment on my part - this is an excellent book. (A back cover review describes it as "riveting" and that's not far off - I found it difficult to put this book down.)
It's all here - the chronology - Kissinger's family's escape from Nazi tyranny, Kissinger's time in the armed services, Harvard, Rockefeller - with the bulk of the book, (understandably so), covering Kissinger's life and times in the Nixon administration - including the bizarre relationship that only these two men could have had.
As for concerns about objectivity, the author addresses this in his introduction - how can a reader not come to this book without preconceived notions/opinions on such controversial/polarizing topics as Watergate, the Vietnam War, détente, etc. - I found the writing to be fair as well as extremely engaging.
Concerning "gossipy" issues - the subject's thin skin, temper tantrums, zeal for secrecy, back-biting, etc. - and "real-politik" issues - China, the USSR, the Paris Peace Talks - All deftly covered in this book combining anecdotes, news reports, analysis, and behind the scenes sources. Kissinger's place in history is up for time to tell - this biography's place is secure. If you're debating about reading this book - don't - pick it up and start it - you won't be disappointed.