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Truman Paperback – June 14, 1993
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"Meticulously detailed, elegantly written, tightly constructed, rich in revealing anecdotes and penetrating insights. It is, as its subject demands, biography on the grand scale."
-- Jonathan Yardley, The Washington Post
"A warm, affectionate and thoroughly captivating biography....the most thorough account of Truman's life yet to appear. "
-- Alan Brinkley, The New York Times Book Review
"McCullough's marvelous feel for history is based on an appreciation of colorful tales and an insight into personalities. In this compelling saga of America's greatest common-man president, McCullough adds luster to an old-fashioned historical approach...the sweeping narrative, filled with telling details and an appreciation of the role individuals play in, shaping the world."
-- Walter Isaacson, Time
"Remarkable....you may open it at any point and instantly become fascinated, so easy, lucid, and energetic is the narrative and so absorbing the sequence of events."
-- The Economist
"McCullough is a master storyteller whose considerable narrative skills have been put to exquisite use in re-creating the life and times of America's 33rd president."
-- Robert Dallek, Los Angeles Times Book Review
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 acclaimed books include The Johnstown Flood, The Great Bridge, Brave Companions, 1776, The Greater Journey, and The Wright Brothers. He is the recipient of numerous honors and awards, including the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian award. Visit DavidMcCullough.com.
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FDR and HST were from different worlds, but the latter appears to have been a wise choice given events that followed his predecessor's passing. Still have 500 pages or so to go, but if you enjoy American history as our nation ascended, this book will not disappoint. McCullough is an avidly apolitical researcher and writer who calls them as he learns of their facts.
Glad I started this informative book. Looking forward to tackling the first of Robert Caro's five volume set on poor old LBJ. For a real treat in presidential bios, though, check out Lord Conrad Black's amazing FDR. It's a whopper!
Good reading American history aficionados!
His description of Joseph McCarthy and the "fake news" is very similar to what is happening today ("I have a list of 81 members of the Communist Party that are working in the State Department!").
David McCullough has been given much (very well deserved) praise for his biography on John Adams. McCullough clearly deserved the attention (and the Pulitzer to boot), but it seems that "John Adams" has caused his work on Harry S. Truman to be overlooked. This is unfortunate, because in my opinion, Truman is a much more relevant and important that John Adams in today's society.
In "Truman" McCullough paints a masterful (and I mean MASTERFUL) portrait of a small town farmer who found himself not only President of the United States but as one of the most important figures of World History. It really is an unbelievable that a man who worked on his farm until age 34 decided to enlist in the Army during WWI. His fame as an artillery Captain allowed him to enter the world of local politics. From there a few incredible breaks have him in the US Senate as a relative anonymous Senator. World War II allows him to use his military expertise to form the "Truman Committee" and the oversight of government military spending. An unlikely turn-of-events has him Vice President of the United States to a dying President. Up next....
1- The Postdam conference with Winston Churchill and Joseph Stalin
2- The dropping of the A-bombs in Japan
3- The drafting of all the railroad workers into the Army
4- Berlin airlift
5- Korean war
6- Firing of MacArthur
To name a few of the more significant events that this farmer had to face during his presidency.
McCullough paints a very vivid a lively man who never forgot the office that he represented, the people he served, or how he was raised. Truman is a model of a politician doing what they think is right and allowing the opinions to fall where they might. McCullough shows that what Truman lacked in polish he made up for in grit and determination.
Final Verdict - McCullough's best work - probably one of the best biographies ever written. In addition, we are given an amazing history of the United States from 1910-1955.
5 Stars - Must read for anyone who has the courage to tackle such a lengthy book.
David McCullough is also a National Treasure.
I proudly own all of his books and I am so glad I have read them all.
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