- Hardcover: 400 pages
- Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (April 4, 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0471024651
- ISBN-13: 978-0471024651
- Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1.3 x 9.7 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 10 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,343,341 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Napoleon of New York: Mayor Fiorello La Guardia Hardcover – April 4, 2002
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"...H Paul Jeffers's biography tells the mayor's story fairly and accurately..." (Daily Telegraph, 15 June 2002)
"... reads like an extended magazine profile. It concentrates on his personality and his public image - and in many ways this is as it should be, since his most obvious attribute as a politician was showmanship... Among other New York mayors, only Giuliani can compare with him; and though Giuliani had to face a bigger challenge last year than anything that confronted him [La Guardia], you feel sure that he would have acquitted himself equally well..." (Sunday Telegraph, 26 May 2002)
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Top customer reviews
Apparently Jeffers book is not scholarly enough for some; as I have been unable to find and read any others yet, no educated comment on this matter can be made.
I was struck repeatedly by the parallels between LaGuardia and another successful, highly influential Mayor, Giuliani. Both wielded absolute power ("dictatorial," to their detractors), did not brook dissent easily, ran as anti-machine reformers (barely gaining office initially but subsequently amassing larger majorities), assailed corruption and malfeasance, and left New York City a markedly better place than they found it.
By his own admission, Jeffers's is NOT the definitive LaGuardia biography. He writes with broad brushstrokes, painting a colorful, big-picture portrait, and avoiding the pitfalls of needless minutae. Jeffers also has a talent for placing his subjects in the context of history. (To wit: LaGuardia spent his formative years in Prescott, Arizona, whose Mayor was the famous Bucky O'Neill of the "Rough Riders" lore. During the Spanish-American War, young LaGuardia was a stringer for a St. Louis newspaper, where he was in the company of such legendary war correspondents as Richard Harding Davis and Stephen Crane.)
As a result of this style, all of Jeffers's biographies are entertaining, easy to read, and provide a succinct overview to laypersons with a passion for history. If you fit that description, "The Napoleon of New York" is for you.
Coming to City Hall during a record-setting unemployment level and disastrous budgets, LaGuardia faced seemingly insurmountable difficulties the minute he sat behind his desk. As Jeffers rightly demonstrates, this diminutive man would not be daunted or intimidated by any group, government agency, or persons of power when prosecuting his agenda. He personally was responsible for funnelling tons of federal money to the city during the Great Depression. He created jobs on one hand, while eliminating the patronage positions held by the hated Tammany machine. No small task. This is but one example that this book explores. There are dozens of others. Pick up "The Napoleon of New York: Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia" and learn more about this truly amazing New Yorker.
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The comparison is completely understandable.Read more