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The Wilderness Warrior: Theodore Roosevelt and the Crusade for America Paperback – May 4, 2010
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Top Customer Reviews
Brinkley's The Wilderness Warrior argues that Teddy Roosevelt was not simply a politician who cared about nature, but that his life as a naturalist permeated his entire outlook on life and use of political power. He goes further by arguing that TR was a committed preservationist who sought to protect nature forever, not just a "utilitarian" conservationist who sought to protect natural resources for later exploitation - despite his affinity for hunting.
The first part of the book documents TR's fascination with wildlife and the outdoors as a young child. Even by the age of 10, he had established a small "museum" of his favorite wildlife specimens (which he later donated to the Smithsonian and American Museum of Natural History).Read more ›
I had bought the book at a time when I was attempting to find a direction in my life (cue violins...) and I was interested in seeing how Roosevelt utilized his love of nature and science in his daily life. Now there are good chunks of the beginning of this book that show how nature and evolution influenced his way of thinking and I was happy with it. I enjoyed learning about the Boone and Crockett Club or the Bronx Zoo and his great influence on the formation of those organziations. By the time it has gotten up to when he was in positions of power, the Governorship of New York and his Presidency I feel the book loses it's direction, by almost placing too much emphasis on his nature stewardship over everything else. Others have hit on factual errors and honestly I don't pick up on those as much as others - on military facts yeah, but that is mostly because of that is my interest. Here it is that I have trouble picking up on how the naturalist in him helped or hindered the politician. To use a cliche, it may be because of having trouble seeing the forest thru the trees. It seems to me that there is just so much information it is difficult to see what is the wheat and what is just chaff (hey two cliches in two sentances!). The emphasis problem may also be shown in the fact that post-Presidency is not even covered in the over 800 pages of text.Read more ›
Wilderness Warrior is bloated with far too much detail, much of it not terribly relevant. To make matters worse, Brinkley frequently gets these details wrong. It would take a book of its own to present the hundreds of factual errors Brinkley makes. Other critical reviews here have done a good job of providing examples; they're all true, and I could add many more besides. So unfortunately these are not isolated errors, but rather the tip of a very large iceberg. Brinkley is a full professor of history, not an amateur, so he has no excuse for such an extensive pattern of error.
Errors aside, what does this book have to offer the reader? Despite its bulk, really not much. There is almost nothing particularly new here. Really, does anyone who would be motivated to read this book not already know that TR was a great presidential conservationist? Yes, like you I wanted to know more about that aspect of TR, and that's what made me want to read this book. But Brinkley simply collects "facts" like a magpie, without any selectivity. They're all in here, probably every little factoid his research assistants dug up, even if a significant percentage are inaccurate. But that's not the worst of it. That would be Brinkley's inability make meaning out of facts. Or, in plain English, Brinkley just doesn't really know what he's talking about whenever he strays from what other TR biographers have already said about the man.
The writing is consistently dull.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Received my purchase today. Exactly what I was looking for. Look forward to doing business in the future.Published 10 hours ago by Amazon Customer
I gave up. I know it's a biography, but this happened and then this happened and then this happened. Yawn. Maybe it got better after 100 pages, but it wasn't my dish of fish.Published 10 days ago by Spatz Strickler
It is a lengthy book but it is worth the time invested to learn so much about the infancy and development of the national park, monument, and forest system by this network of... Read morePublished 11 days ago by Heimbach
Has the United States had a man of such diverse interests and talents since Theodore Roosevelt? One can only imagine the volume of protests today if such a man occupied the White... Read morePublished 13 days ago by Len Knighton
Not as interesting as I thought it would be. Maybe just not my kind of bookPublished 1 month ago by Ralph J. Sterba
This was the best and most thorough book on TR that I've read. I would highly recommend itPublished 1 month ago by Rennae Gruchalla
Introduces Theodore Roosevelt leadership and vision to preserve national parks, bird reserves, forests and monuments. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Alan Levy
I haven't read much yet, however it is very Interesting....Just the kind of book you want to "curl up" with on a rainy day.Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
A really good account of Theodore Roosevelt's part in helping preserve our National Parks.Published 2 months ago by Coco Flora