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Washington: The Indispensable Man (Mentor Series) Mass Market Paperback – April 3, 1984
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Top Customer Reviews
The author knows his stuff, having written a 3 volume history of George Washington, then much later condensing that into this one volume popular book without the footnotes. He knows the subject, but has kept it fast paced-- necessary because of the many years that need to be covered while Washington was the center of our nation's public life. We might read of a president who was in office for 8 years, (or longer for FDR), but Washington was a central public figure as general, shaper of our constitution, and President for a far longer period of time than any of them. For all who love history, this is a great book, providing a well rounded portrait of a remarkable man. It's not sensationalistic, just a really good read for history buffs.
One of the conclusions I came to, while reading this book, is that Washington is probably the only person who could have successfully served as the first President of the U.S. - he was very fair minded, didn't take sides, and didn't use his influence in areas he felt were inappropriate (too bad today's politicians don't act the same way!). I believe were any other of the major political figures of the day our first President, the nation would have fallen apart, and would be a collection of states, and not the country we are today.
That being said, I do have one complaint about the book. The book was written in sections - instead of in a strictly linear (timeline) fashion. As a result, occasionally you'll get done with one section, and then goto the next section, and end up going backwards in time.
I can understand why the author did this - I'm sure he felt like some subjects needed to be covered by themselves, and not just thrown into a timeline with everything else. However, by doing it this way, sometimes you get a bit confused in regards to how things fall on the timeline.
Otherwise - a very good book.