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81. Truman
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82. Goebbels: Mastermind of the Third
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83. Legacy: Paying the Price for the
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84. Admiral of the Ocean Sea : A Life
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81. Truman
by David McCullough
list price: $40.00
our price: $26.40
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0671456547
Catlog: Book (1992-06-15)
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Sales Rank: 9738
Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

This warm biography of Harry Truman is both an historical evaluation of his presidency and a paean to the man's rock-solid American values. Truman was a compromise candidate for vice president, almost an accidental president after Roosevelt's death 12 weeks into his second term. Truman's stunning come-from-behind victory in the 1948 election showed how his personal qualities of integrity and straightforwardness were appreciated by ordinary Americans, perhaps, as McCullough notes, because he was one himself. His presidency was dominated by enormously controversial issues: he dropped the atomic bomb on Japan, established anti-Communism as the bedrock of American foreign policy, and sent U.S. troops into the Korean War. In this winner of the 1993 Pulitzer Prize, McCullough argues that history has validated most of Truman's war-time and Cold War decisions. ... Read more

Reviews (172)

5-0 out of 5 stars Truman
Truman by David McCullough is a biography of one of our most extraordinary Presidents, Ol' Give 'Em Hell Harry, the man who said, " the buck stops here." Harry S. Truman, who's humble start in rule Missouri, with hard work, determination, and circumstance landed in the Oval Office of the White House.

This is a tale of a man, told warmly with feeling. A story of a man who walked in the shadow of Franklin D. Roosevelt, a man who had to make a choice to use the Atomic Bomb, a man who proved himself, a man of uncommon vitality and strength of character. Reading this book, one gets to know Harry Truman, you feel emotion and see insight as the author sets the story and writes a telling tale.

Harry Truman a man who married later in life because he didn't have the money. His work on the farm gave him strength and dogged optimism in the face of defeat, but much more was to come for Harry. Facing responsibilities such as had weighed on no man ever before and setting American politics and diplomacy, Harry Truman was treading a new age.

The author has mastered Truman in this book, as no other has to date, and it shows throughout this book. This is the life of Harry Truman complete with all of the supporting characters as well... Churchill, Roosevelt, Stalin, Eleanor Roosevelt, his wife Bess Wallace Truman, General George Marshall, Joseph McCarthy and Dean Acheson. Harry Truman was responsible for the Truman Doctrine, NATO, the Berlin Airlift and the Marshall Plan, but fired General Douglas MacArthur. "Truman," shows Harry Truman to be complex, thoughtful, peppery when he needed to be and plainspoken.

I really enjoyed reading this biography... like a grandfather telling a story that happened in his lifetime... with understanding and thoughtfulness.

5-0 out of 5 stars A model biography of an almost model man
David McCullough delivers! Truman is a model biography - in both McCullough's craft and his subject of the epic life of Harry S Truman. McCullough truly creates another universe - a reality that would have existed only in the past, but now fits in your hands in these 1000 some pages. The reader will find him/herself immersed in the history and lives of amazing figures of another age whose actions for which we - citizens of the world are greatly indebted. The reader will both know Harry S Truman and his historical significance - his heroic and at the time highly controversial Presidency.

Truman is both an epic of a man's life and homage to the triumph of American democracy. Truman is a man of humble origins who achieves incredible feats. I urge anyone who stumbled onto this page to "get to know" Truman by reading this book. This book is a joy to read - it flows like a novel. You will not be disappointed.

"I never did give anybody hell. I just told the truth and they thought it was hell."
-Harry S Truman

5-0 out of 5 stars Buy It and Read It ASAP!!
I first read this book in 1992 when it was released. I've read it over several times since and each time I enjoy it just as much as the first. What a great person and what a remarkable life! This is one book that I can't possibly say enough about. IT'S OUTSTANDING!! Mr. McCullough obviously admires his subject, but he is objective and shows Mr. Truman warts and all. He had very few warts however. BUY IT and READ IT as soon as you can. You won't regret the time spent.

4-0 out of 5 stars Talks about the right aspect of Truman's career
I admired the book for talking about Truman's friendship with Eddie Jacobson. He and Eddie were business partners in the 1920's and Eddie (a Jewish man) later influenced Truman to help found the modern state of Israel. I am still disappointd as I am also searching for talk about (probably) Truman's other mostly unsung achievement-the firing of Churchill and the birth of modern India and Pakistan. Sadly the book offers nothing about that aspect of Truman's career.

5-0 out of 5 stars My First Biography
I decided to read this book for two reasons. First, I was/am an avid supporter of Howard Dean, and he often cites Truman as his favorite president, and knowing so little about Truman, I was curious why. Second, practically the only thing I did know about Truman was that he made the decision to use the Bomb, and I was extremely interested in what sort of man it takes to make such a decision.

The book is 992 pages long - daunting to someone whose only other 500+ page read had been Lord of the Rings.

But I found each page interesting and riveting. Never did I find it slow or dull. I had no idea how much impact the Truman administration had on the country and the world. Not only the Bomb, but the start of the Cold War, the Korean War, the first push by a President for universal health care, the first push by a President for equal civil rights. Truman, an ordinary farmer from western Missouri, is the absolute example of the American dream.

The book also answered both of my questions. The similarities in Truman's approach to politics and his agenda with Howard Dean's campaign for the presidential nomination are uncanny. And, to my surprise, Truman was not at all the sort of man I imagined making the decision to obliterate Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

I feel like I've learned more from this one book than I learned in 17 years of schooling. ... Read more


82. Goebbels: Mastermind of the Third Reich
by David Irving, Walter Frentz
list price: $90.00
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Asin: 1872197132
Catlog: Book (1997-12-09)
Publisher: Focal Point Publications
Sales Rank: 785051
Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (27)

5-0 out of 5 stars New insights into the Nazi hierarchy
In his biography of Joseph Goebbels David Irving has provided some masterful and provocative insights into the inner workings of the Nazi hierarchy. However, the book is sometimes confusingly organized and Irving's use of the present tense when describing past events can be irritating and seem a bit amaturish in so seasoned a writer.

With these caveats in mind, this is still an important book and necessary reading for any student of World War II. Mr. Irving is neither a Holocaust denier nor a proponent of the Nazis or their ideology; he simply has a different point of view. It's amazing how vociferous and censorious the academic history establishment can become when their 'established' truths are challenged; and in this book, Mr. Irving has done just that.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Refreshing Look At European Turmoil Around WWII
This is fascinating treatise! It is the first book by David Irving I have read, but there will certainly be others. Although the dust jacket pays the obligatory homage to Goebbels' "evil genius" and the "holocaust," the book itself is a highly refreshing and readable account. Irving is the first to actually use Goebbels' personal diaries, and what emerges is a picture of a quite understandable, albeit rather sad individual. Of far more interest to me personally, is the study of others in the Third Reich such as Hitler, Strasser, Streicher, and others as seen THROUGH GOEBBELS' EYES! Irving is a true objective historian who writes a well-researched and documented book without feeling he must dish up the sort of pap usually provided by the dominant media to those interested in this period of history in Europe.

5-0 out of 5 stars Europe's Machiavelli
It's amusing in the extreme to see so many people froth at the mouth over David Irving. If he is "so discredited," why is he thrown such a fit about? The fact of the matter is that history should never be written about until fifty years after the occurences in question.

Remember, Watergate was first derided as lunatic conspiracy theory, and one that eventually toppled Richard M. Nixon...

Here, Irving neither "apologizes" for Nazi Germany or its architects, nor does he simply goose-step in unison with the current gospel according to the cereal box. What he has done was to obtain 1,200 plates of glass upon which were written heretofore unavailable Goebbels diaries entries, that were "missing" when Louis Lochner released his work of Goebbels' diaries circa 1943-1945, and utilize them to take the reader into the mind of the man who was Hitler's "false prophet."

A brilliant portrait of a perverse, twisted and sad soul that impacted the world in an (ultimately) destructive fashion.

I suggest you read, and judge for yourself.

I suggest you read, and decide for yourself.

2-0 out of 5 stars its fiction, not history
Unfortunately, this interesting bit of history relies on fictional details to support its larger claims. There is documentation about the falsities in this volume that came to light at David Irvings libel trial in London that removes any value to this book other than the interesting and fascinating way that Mr. Irving is able to weave his stories. If you like other WWII fiction you might enjoy this. If you are looking for REAL history then you are better off reading Goebbels diary entries in their original German than relying on David Irvings misguided attempt to channel the Third Reichs thinkers in this book.

1-0 out of 5 stars Covering Up For Hitler
David Irving's "biography" of Goebbels is a cover up which is full of distortions. Some of the more serious distortions were the subject of the civil trial in London where Irving attempted to have Deborah Lipstadt's book, "Denying the Holocaust", banned in England. Professor Richard Evans, a real historian of the Third Reich, was able to show as an expert witness for Lipstadt's defense that Irving had distorted a number of crucial points in this "biography" of Goebbels.

Two of the crucial distortions Evans showed were (1) Irving's claim that in 1932 31,000 Jews were guilty of insurance fraud in Germany when the total number of all such frauds, Jewish and non - Jewish, was 74 and (2) Irving's citing a document which he claimed proved that the German authorities attempted to prevent Kristallnacht when the actual document shows the exact opposite - i.e. the authorities were encouraging the destruction. The reader of "Goebbels" is seriously encouraged to read Richard Evans' "Lying About Hitler."

Also, John C. Zimmerman's book "Holocaust Denial: Demographics, Testimonies and Ideologies" has a lengthy chapter on Irving's dishonest methodology which shows the way Irivng manipulates and distorts information. Zimmerman also demonstrates that Irving has distorted key incriminating entries from Goebbels' diary and has deliberately ignored other key entries which prove the existence of the Holocaust. ... Read more


83. Legacy: Paying the Price for the Clinton Years
by Rich Lowry
list price: $27.95
our price: $27.95
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Asin: 0895261294
Catlog: Book (2003-10-01)
Publisher: Regnery Publishing
Sales Rank: 50872
Average Customer Review: 3.42 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Bill and Hillary Clinton don't want you to read this book.Bill has spent his days since the presidency aggressively defending his legacy, and Hillary plans to run for president on it, and now, unfortunately for them, Rich Lowry uses sound fact and shocking detail to dispel the myth of the Clinton legacy once and for all.

Showing how a politician with grandiose ambitions became a cautious, poll-driven placeholder and how a president who yearned to confront a great international crisis cringed and still shrank from the threat of Islamic terrorism when it arrived, Lowry destroys Clinton's record as president and sparks an intense debate about the nature of his legacy.

Lowry reveals how: 1. Clinton didn't "grow" the economy; his economic record depends on lies 2. Clinton sold out US national security to campaign contributors 3. Clinton stood in the way of real welfare reform before being forced by Republicans to sign a reform bill 4. Attorney General Janet Reno was AWOL on domestic security 5. Clinton's scandals were very real and he deserved impeachment 6. Clinton made sexual liberation the only cause for which he took career-endangering risks 7. Clinton's unwillingness to use force abroad emboldened America's enemies 8. Clinton left the country vulnerable to September 11 terrorist attacks

You won't know the truth about Clinton until you read this book. ... Read more

Reviews (103)

5-0 out of 5 stars The case against Clinton
Believe it or not, in today's day and age, as our country is fighting a global war on terrorism, there are still those that look back at the era of Clinton for "peace and prosperity" and consider him one of the best presidents ever. Clinton's record is based on myths and spinning and Rich Lowry gets to the bottom of this with a great objective approach and a witty writing style.

People give credit to Clinton for the economic boom of the Nineties, but Lowry shows how the economy was already on the upturn prior to Clinton's inaugeration. The budget was balanced because the Republican-controlled Congress wouldn't pass many of his extra programs and truly did limit his spending (if Clinton had his way, Hillary's healthcare initiative would have passed, raising the already great deficit).

Welfare and crime? Republican triumphs. Clinton signed welfare reform under pressure and never truly delivered on his campaign promises. As for crime, hardly anything Clinton did can be attributed as the cause for the decrease in crime.

Lowry really shows how Clinton was truly a "waffle" as depicted by cartoonists. He never took a strong stand on everything and constantly switched his position on everything (the issue of a balanced budget is a great example).

Clinton was absolutely lacking in morality. He did not lie about "just" sex, but truly, it got to deeper fundamental issues.

However, in the most powerful section, Lowry exposes Clinton's meager foreign policy and how he let global terrorism spread while refusing to take on the serious issues facing the world. From the Middle East to the few wars to the actual issue of terrorism worldwide and how Clinton refused to take on terrorism and make the world a safer place.

Under Clinton, America enjoyed short-lived "peace and prosperity" as a cover, not realizing what was happening underneath. Once September 11th happened, America had to strongly re-examine Clinton and his policies. Who let terrorism run so rampant? Why is the global situation a mess? Who let these corporate crooks, like those at Enron, get away? Why did the economy drop so rapidly after Clinton left office? The answers all point to Clinton and his bitter legacy.

5-0 out of 5 stars Well Researched
The source obviously conservative, does make a strong argument regarding the Clinton Legacy (mostly its failures). Mr. Lowry's research and notes are extensive (33% of the book). He slams former President Clinton's legacy on Domestic and International Issues. Anyone with a pro,anti, or neutral Clinton bias would be well served in reading this book and subsequently evaluating Mr. Lowry's notes.

If Mr. Lowry is correct in his analysis of the former President, Mr. Clinton and or his defenders should be called upon to answer to these assertions (from the media), especially the assetions that relate to his dealings (or lack of dealings) with terrorism.

3-0 out of 5 stars it won't change any minds
you Americans look like you're stuffed to me. Every book review I read about politics on Amazon and you guys are divided along the left/right divides. Neither side can see that the other has at least some valid points.

Some of this book is interesting and some seems suspiciously like BS to me but no one can see it. It is either god given truth or absolute lies. The truth is probably in the middle. Yes, Clinton was a weak, indecisve man befuddled in a personal crisis of his own making but no he probably wasn't the devil himself either.

1-0 out of 5 stars TERRIBLE
A bunch of conspiracy theory garbage, typical of Lowry, who is at the center of all of the lowest, dirtiest tricks in politics in the last 20 years.

1-0 out of 5 stars More Clinton Bashing Filth From Regnery Publishing
"Tell Lies, Destroy Lives, And Blame Everything On Clinton." -- Republican Motto ... Read more


84. Admiral of the Ocean Sea : A Life of Christopher Columbus
by Samuel Eliot Morison
list price: $28.99
our price: $28.99
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Asin: 0316584789
Catlog: Book (1991-10-12)
Publisher: Little, Brown
Sales Rank: 51703
Average Customer Review: 4.25 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Telling the story of the greatest sailor of them all, "Admiral of the Ocean Sea" is a vivid and definitive biography of Columbus that details all of his voyages that, for better or worse, changed the world. 50 drawings, maps & charts; 4 fold-outs. ... Read more

Reviews (12)

5-0 out of 5 stars Enlightening and entertaining
This was one of the most enjoyable biographies I've read. The most distinguishing thing about this book of course is the fact that Morison recreated the voyages before his writing the book. This recreation lends credibility to his writing. But more than that, it makes much of the book, particularly those parts at sea, seem as if the reader is experiencing the voyages through the person of Columbus. Not only the particulars of what he saw, but the smells of land breezes, the feel of the trade winds, the motion of the boat. Morison's obvious love of the sea and of sailing work very much in his favor. Another strength is the historical perspective carefully provided by Morison. Knowing what was going on with Catholic Spain during Columbus' life (the defeat of the Moors, the expulsion of the Jews, political intrigue and conflict involving France, England, Portugal, and others) helps to explain the motivations of Columbus and his contemporaries. I was a bit wary of a 60-year old book, Pulitzer or no Pulitzer, in light of the more recent reconsiderations of Columbus. Some people would have us believe that the voyage of 1492 was some sort of original sin inflicted upon the paradise that was the western hemisphere. But in his preface, Morison makes it clear that he is concerned with Columbus, the "man of action", and is leaving analyses of his motivations to others. And at any rate, Morison's sensibilities are very much in tune with those of the year 2000. He makes few apologies for Columbus and takes him to task where warranted, particularly for his treatment of the natives. One chapter, "Hell in Hispaniola", is almost exclusively devoted to this area. One word of warning: If your knowledge of sailing isn't good, then you may want to bone up on some of the rudiments before starting this book. Morison provides an explanation of some of the terminology, but not enough for someone who knows as little about sailing as I did coming in. But please don't be put off by that - this book is a real pleasure.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Great Discoverer
Morison was both a true sailor and a true writer. This, his pre-war masterpiece (his WW2 history of the U.S. Navy being his other) was intended for the 450th anniversary of the First Voyage which, sadly, was overshadowed by other events. It remains the standard English-language work on the four voyages of the Admiral (as Morison likes to call him), and it reigns supreme over all other Great Explorer books as the one tome which is doubly literate - both well written and fully conversant in sailing lore. The first point Morison makes is that Columbus did, after all, discover America: Africans, Chinese, Vikings and (obviously) the Indians had encountered it before 1492, but only Columbus got back home to spread the word. Discovery is not just finding something, it's telling everyone else about it. The other early point debunked is that Columbus never "proved" the world was round, as no-one ever doubted it was: his thesis was that the world was not as big as everyone said - therefore China was only a month's sail away. In this, he was utterly, utterly wrong, but the by-product of his error was the unfolding of the New World. Finally, Morison comes to Columbus the man. He was no saint - his treatment of the Carib peoples is a terrible stain on his and his masters' reputations - but as a navigator, few approach his skill, and none his achievements.

4-0 out of 5 stars biased book, still good reading for the beginner
Morison (RIP) was in love with Columbus, thus, don't hold your breath waiting to find out details of the natives' Holocauts (yes). And the "other" Holocaust will be forever part of his biography.

Columbus was in large part responsible for introducing penalty of cutting off hands of Indians who failed to produce the quota of gold dust. Greedy Columbus himself was killing natives at the wholesale. After all, in his first journal the word "gold" is repeated countless times. Columbus was first the businessman, and then a superb mariner.

Such abuses are polished by Morison, making the book unreliable source.

Still, author uses good narration to explain life of Columbus, and sets in invironment. If you know nothing about Columbus, you may buy the book for its easy reading. If you are looking for fair and detailed bio, look further (John Boyd Thacher, "Cristopher Columbus", 1903, is still the best source).

Worthwile to note: this book comes also in 2 volume version, which, beside of more pictures, includes an extra chapter on origin of syphilis (Morison in general minimizes massive raping of women).

5-0 out of 5 stars The Best on the subject...
What other Author on Columbus was also an Admiral? ... and sailed the same pathways on a clipper ship?... Morison has written many books on Cristobal... and this one is the cadaliac. I have a slip-covered collectors edition, but have bought many used copies to give to friends as gifts (plus a few for myself). If you like truthful history written with style and professionalism... this in a book to own.

5-0 out of 5 stars A great book by a great historian and a great prose stylist
This remains the definitive biography of Columbus. Morison was one of the greatest historians ever to practice the craft--his scholarship still holds up today. He was also a master of the written word, unlike most professional historians today.

Morison enumerates the reasons why he admires Columbus, but he also catalogs the man's misdeeds--for example, Morison uses the word "genocide" to describe Columbus's treatment of the Indians as governor of Hispaniola. Morison gives his readers the facts they need to form their own opinion of Columbus. (I do not share Morison's admiration for the man.)

I must correct the astonishingly ignorant remarks of the reviewer who identified himself as "A reader from New York City" and entitled his review "So much ignorance my God..."

Here goes:

1) The reviewer asserted that Morison was not, in fact, an admiral. Actually, Morison did receive the title. FDR made Morison an honorary admiral when he commissioned the scholar to write the naval history of the US role in WWII. (Morison produced a 12-volume epic. It's still in print.)

2) The reviewer regurgitates a number of questions about Columbus's origins that he apparently drew from another book by a revisionist historian (Kirkpatrick Sale?). The questions the reviewer repeats are good ones, but they are questions that remain open because the evidence to answer them conclusively probably does not exist. If the reviewer were a trained historian, he might understand that. ... Read more


85. The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin (Dover Thrift Editions)
by Benjamin Franklin
list price: $2.00
our price: $3.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0486290735
Catlog: Book (1996-05-01)
Publisher: Dover Publications
Sales Rank: 6150
Average Customer Review: 4.12 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

One of the most popular works of American literature, this charming self-portrait has been translated into nearly every language. It covers Franklin’s life up to his prewar stay in London as representative of the Pennsylvania Assembly, including his boyhood years, work as a printer, experiments with electricity, political career, much more.
... Read more

Reviews (40)

5-0 out of 5 stars Franklin's informal account of his remarkable life
In many ways, this is, to someone coming to it for the first time, a very surprising book. For one thing, it is amazingly incomplete. Franklin is, of course, one of the most famous Americans who ever lived, and his accomplishments in a wide array of endeavors are a part of American lore and popular history. A great deal of this lore and many of his accomplishments are missing from this account of his life. He never finished the autobiography, earlier in his life because he was too busy with what he terms public "employments," and later in life because the opium he was taking for kidney stones left him unable to concentrate sufficiently. Had Franklin been able to write about every period of his life and all of his achievements, his AUTOBIOGRAPHY would have been one of the most remarkable documents every produced. It is amazingly compelling in its incomplete state.

As a serious reader, I was delighted in the way that Franklin is obsessed with the reading habits of other people. Over and over in the course of his memoir, he remarks that such and such a person was fond of reading, or owned a large number of books, or was a poet or author. Clearly, it is one of the qualities he most admires in others, and one of the qualities in a person that makes him want to know a person. He finds other readers to be kindred souls.

If one is familiar with the Pragmatists, one finds many pragmatist tendencies in Franklin's thought. He is concerned less with ideals than with ideas that work and are functional. For instance, at one point he implies that while his own beliefs lean more towards the deistical, he sees formal religion as playing an important role in life and society, and he goes out of his way to never criticize the faith of another person. His pragmatism comes out also in list of the virtues, which is one of the more famous and striking parts of his book. As is well known, he compiled a list of 13 virtues, which he felt summed up all the virtues taught by all philosophers and religions. But they are practical, not abstract virtues. He states that he wanted to articulate virtues that possessed simple and not complex ideas. Why? The simpler the idea, the easier to apply. And in formulating his list of virtues, he is more concerned with the manner in which these virtues can be actualized in one's life. Franklin has utterly no interest in abstract morality.

One of Franklin's virtues is humility, and his humility comes out in the form of his book. His narrative is exceedingly informal, not merely in the first part, which was ostensibly addressed to his son, but in the later sections (the autobiography was composed upon four separate occasions). The informal nature of the book displays Franklin's intended humility, and for Franklin, seeming to be so is nearly as important as actually being so. For part of the function of the virtues in an individual is not merely to make that particular person virtuous, but to function as an example to others. This notion of his being an example to other people is one of the major themes in his book. His life, he believes, is an exemplary one. And he believes that by sharing the details of his own life, he can serves as a template for other lives.

One striking aspect of his book is what one could almost call Secular Puritanism. Although Franklin was hardly a prude, he was nonetheless very much a child of the Puritans. This is not displayed merely in his promotion of the virtues, but in his abstaining from excessiveness in eating, drinking, conversation, or whatever. Franklin is intensely concerned with self-governance.

I think anyone not having read this before will be surprised at how readable and enjoyable this is. I think also one can only regret that Franklin was not able to write about the entirety of his life. He was a remarkable man with a remarkable story to tell.

5-0 out of 5 stars You will be richer from reading this book
Benjamin Franklin's autobiography is the story of one man's efforts to integrate certain principles and habits - integrity, humility, fidelity, temperance, courage, justice, patience, industry, simplicity, modesty - into his life and to embed them deep within his nature. Franklin was a scientist, philosopher, statesman, inventor, educator, diplomat, politician, humorist and man of letters who led a very full life. He was also a moralist and humanitarian who was happy to be considered unconventional by doing things the way he thought they should be done. His was a life well lived and a model from which we can learn much. In the introduction we are told: "Himself a master of the motives of human conduct, Franklin did not set out to reveal himself in his autobiography. Rather, he intended to tell us (insofar as we, the nation, are the 'posterity' to whom he addressed himself) how life was to be lived, good done, and happiness achieved - how the ball was to be danced."

Franklin did not have an easy life as the tenth son of a candle maker whose education ended at the age of ten. But by hard work and careful planning he was able to retire from business at the age of forty-two and devote his time to science and politics. He was sent to England in 1764 to petition the King to end the proprietary government of the colony. Soon after the Revolution began he was sent to France to negotiate an alliance with Louis XVI. He was a member of the committee that drafted the Declaration of Independence. It is difficult to image anyone not coming away richer from reading this book.

3-0 out of 5 stars A Book Of Firsts
Said to be the first work of American literature, by America's first citizen: Ben Franklin's autobiography has certainly drawn a lot of praise.

Written in several pieces, it takes his life just past his electrical experiments, ending with his ambassadorial trip to London in 1757 on behalf of the Pennsylvania Assembly to argue that the Proprietors (the descendants of William Penn) should accept a tax to fund the raising of a militia.

Ben's early life story is familiar to all, coming penniless from Boston to Philadelphia, etc. particularly these days when new Franklin biographies seem to appear almost monthly. It is an interesting book, particularly because it was written by Franklin himself. But the breathless praise that is everywhere showered upon it seems a bit over done. First of all, it's incomplete, and secondly, it's not nearly as witty as Poor Richard.

5-0 out of 5 stars An Unfinished Autobiography of the Consumate American Life
Franklin wrote this autobiography as a letter of instruction in the ways of the world to his youthful and illegitimate son of 40. It only covers the first half or so of his incredible life, so the things that really made him well-known are not covered, but there is plenty here anyway.

Franklin recounts his family's modest life in England and the circumstances that brought them to Boston. He was among the youngest of a very large family, ultimately finding his way to Philadelphia to find work as a printer when an apprenticeship with an older brother turned sour.

We always think of Franklin as being a slightly older statesman among the Founding Fathers, when in fact he was a full generation older than Washington or Jefferson. Unlike popular perception, he was an athletic and vibrant youth, who rescued a drowning Dutch companion and taught swimming to children of London's elite.

Philadelphia in the 1720's and 1730's was a small town, never sure if it would really take off as a settlement. Franklin quickly befriended key politicians who felt Philadelphia had grown sufficiently to have a world-class print shop. He played a key role in the town's development, leading civic groups in establishing libraries, fire companies, meeting halls, and street cleaning services. Of course, he was also the consummate politician, serving in office, and networking his way to his first fortune by publishing government documents and printing the first paper currency. He also had a knack for working with the several important religious sects of that time and place, especially the pacifist Quakers, even though Franklin was a deist.

Franklin was a clever businessman. In today's lexicon, he effectively franchised across the colonies his concept of the publisher/printer who would provide both the content and the ink on paper. By age 30, he had set up his business affairs so that his printing businesses in several colonies were operated by partners and he received a share of the profits, allowing him to pursue other interests.

The autobiography is unfinished, so we don't hear his account of his pursuits of electricity, which made him as famous and well-known as Bill Gates is today, nor his thought on the Revolution. Franklin did play a key role in establishing logistical support to the British during their fight with the French in the New World. At that time and during his years in Europe, he was generally perceived as a Tory supporter.

Read this book to learn how Franklin devoted himself to self-improvement by establishing clubs, lending libraries, a sober lifestyle allowing time for study, and his methods for measuring his personal performance against metrics he had established for a proper lifestyle. One will also gather a new appreciation for the fullness, utility, and richness of the English language when put on paper by a master.

3-0 out of 5 stars Read as a companion to Isaacson
Ten years ago, I purchased the paperback and could not get past the first few chapters. Five years ago, I bought the cassette version and could not get much further. After finishing and enjoying Walter Isaacson's Franklin bio immediately prior to this third attempt, I was finally able to enjoy "The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin". Fredd Wayne brings Franklin to life with what seems like a perfect portrayal. He *performs* rather than narrates.

Without the insight from Issacson, or, I suspect, from any decent biography of Franklin, the autobiography is disjointed, as he wrote different sections at different times of his life, and some time periods are eliminated completely. And it seems to have multiple personalities, struggling between the subjects of self-help, biography, history and simple meanderings and ruminations of an old man.

As a companion book - 5 stars; as a standalone - 2-3 stars ... Read more


86. No Ordinary Time: Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt: The Home Front in World War II
by Doris Kearns Goodwin
list price: $18.00
our price: $12.24
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0684804484
Catlog: Book (1995-10-01)
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Sales Rank: 8329
Average Customer Review: 4.65 out of 5 stars
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A compelling chronicle of a nation and its leaders during the period when modern America was created. With an uncanny feel for detail and a novelist's grasp of drama and depth, Doris Kearns Goodwin brilliantly narrates the interrelationship between the inner workings of the Roosevelt White House and the destiny of the United States. Goodwin paints a comprehensive, intimate portrait that fills in a historical gap in the story of our nation under the Roosevelts. ... Read more

Reviews (80)

5-0 out of 5 stars An Unprecedented Account of the Roosevelts and Their Time
No Ordinary Time presents a compelling social history of both Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt and the development of American society during the war years. Both are exposed for their flaws and both are extolled for their virtues. Doris Kearns Goodwin interweaves an impressive array of primary resource material in chronicalling international and domestic developments. For example, the emotional ups and downs of the Allied war effort are counterposed with excerpts from the diary of Nazi propaganda leader Joseph Goebbels. The progressive views and policies of the Roosevelt administration are aptly pitted with letters to the White House demonstrating the stubborn racism and apathy of many in WWII American society. In the end, Goodwin paints an illustrative picture of both the Roosevelts and their time -- with wonderful accounts of events and attitudes that will surprise a number of readers.

Because of Goodwin's approach, the book is equally valuable for what is says about the Roosevelts as what it says about American society during WWII. The Roosevelt marraige is displayed in all its beauty and ugliness. Goodwin aptly demonstrates the irony of the live of the Roosevelts: while they strove ceaselessly to improve the lives of every Amercian, they often manipulated and harmed the very people closest to them, especially each other.

At the same time, through splendid research and organization, Goodwin follows America's attitudes on such varied subjects as race, gender equality, labor relations, politics, and the war production effort. No item of domestic concern seems overlooked. In her portrayal of domestic developments, Goodwin chronicles the true beginning of modern American society. And once again, as with her descriptions of the Roosevelts, Goodwin does not hesitate to present American society in all its glory and shame. The wonders of American ingenuity and dedication are countered with the ugliness of the Japanese-American internments and racial biases.

Goodwin's account is simply a unique piece of history. While most authors would be unable to portray either the Roosevelts or American society in such brilliant detail, Goodwin pulls both off together in a seemless and impressive account. It is no wonder that this book won the Pulitzer Prize.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Fascinating Portrait of FDR & Eleanor and Their Times!
Once again Doris Kearns Goodwin pulls the elusive hare from the historical hat! I have been a fan of hers since reading "Lyndon Johnson and the American Dream" well over twenty years ago, and after all this time and reading a number of her books, I never cease to wonder at her incredible creative abilities, at her sheer profundity with language, nuance, and always choosing the right word to cast her narrative into exactly the right mode and string the reader along the trail of her entertaining and informative story line. This time out she tackles the single most fascinating period of modern American history, those critical years between the onset of the Depression and the end of World War Two.

Here she has chosen to thread her way through both the public and private lives and times of the Roosevelts in the throes of their four successive administrations between 1932 and 1945, in the throes of what was undoubtedly the most momentous and critical period in modern American history. Her powerful prose style lends itself magnificently to the task at hand in terms of describing the principals and the social surround masterfully, and the reader is swept into the waves and eddies of the period, sitting in the catbird's seat as Goodwin describes both the intricacies of FDR's administration and their uneasy, unconventional, and unusual marriage. This is an extremely well researched, insightful and thoughtful study of two enormously complex people at the peaks of the intellectual, social, and political powers, in the midst of a socio-political maelstrom of historical proportions.

As described by Goodwin, both Eleanor and FDR become figures of almost Biblical proportions; modern titans committed both to the nation as well as to each other. Yet these two were in many ways living separate lies, and one marvels and the degree of maturity, selflessness, and composure each had to face the issues of both their public and private obligations in the manner they apparently did. Her emerging portrait of FDR is that of a brilliant, charismatic, endlessly witty and wise patrician who steeled himself to the notion of "noblesse oblige", while Eleanor is painted in what is in many ways a much more sympathetic light, as a long-suffering, patient, loving and ultimately independent woman no longer content to stand quietly in the shadows.

This is a very comprehensive, compassionate, and compelling historical biography of the Roosevelts in the context of their times, and is an admirable addition to the growing body of scholarly yet popular works so many recently active American historians like Goodwin, Ambrose, David Kennedy, James Patterson, and Taylor Branch have contributed to our understanding of the United States in the 20th century. I really enjoyed reading this magnificent book by Ms. Goodwin, and recommend it for your history bookshelf. Enjoy!

5-0 out of 5 stars A good look at a fascinating partnership.
Doris Kearns Goodwin's book "No Ordinary Time" about FDR & Eleanor is a fine piece of writing that certainly belongs in anyone's American History library. Of course it is World History, but it is written from a very American perspective and thereby manages to relegate even Churchill to the wings.

There is a degree of nearly strident feminism in the writing, not quite what one would call shrill, but the author's sympathies seem to lean decidedly toward Mrs. Roosevelt, often based on issues of sexual inequality. To be fair, Ms. Kearns Goodwin is about as harsh in her handling of racial prejudice
and anti-semitism, both cases where FDR used Eleanor as a lightening rod.

What emerges is nonetheless what most sources reveal: he was the instinctive politician who happened to be in the right place at the right time to make magic happen while she was a tireless social activist more in tune with the masses than with any one person. He could bend his principles when needed (either for the greater good of the whole or on occasion for his own selfish indulgences) whereas she was quite rigid and nearly incapable of intimacy.

One can (or should) hardly judge them. It is enough to appreciate their complexity and their contrasts and to see how they played off one another so well. The real beauty of this book is that it allows us to do just that quite completely.

5-0 out of 5 stars the best biography
Doris Kearns Goodwin really took her time and wrote one of the best books I have ever read. She talked about Franklin and Eleanore and their influence on each other, as well as the support for each other they needed to get through WWII. I was born in 1960, and recognized many of the names in politics from my childhood, but the step by step process of the war and the thinking behind each step was just so educational for me. I chose this book for my Literature group last year, and everyone loved it. Most of the women lived through this time, and one was a nurse in the army at that time, and said this was a very accurate account, but also that she learned much more than was ever in the news. Just a great experience and definitely sparked great discussion fo hours!

1-0 out of 5 stars Roosevelt propaganda
FDR was the second worst president in U.S. history after Bill Clinton. He bankrupted the U.S. economy, he made us a socialist nation, and brainwashed us with filthy Soviet propaganda during World War II. Doris Kearns Goodwin is a Roosevelt worshipper. Steer clear of works like this and instead read John Flynn's "The Roosevelt Myth". ... Read more


87. The First American: The Life and Times of Benjamin Franklin
by H.W. BRANDS
list price: $35.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0385493282
Catlog: Book (2000-09-19)
Publisher: Doubleday
Sales Rank: 35257
Average Customer Review: 4.63 out of 5 stars
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Benjamin Franklin may have been the most remarkable American ever to live: a printer, scientist, inventor, politician, diplomat, and--finally--an icon. His life was so sweeping that this comprehensive biography by H.W. Brands at times reads like a history of the United States during the 18th century. Franklin was at the center of America's transition from British colony to new nation, and was a kind of Founding Grandfather to the Founding Fathers; he was a full generation older than George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, and Patrick Henry, and they all viewed him with deep respect. "Of those patriots who made independence possible, none mattered more than Franklin, and only Washington mattered as much," writes Brands (author of a well-received Teddy Roosevelt biography, T.R.: The Last Romantic). Franklin was a complex character who sometimes came up a bit short in the personal virtue department, once commenting, "That hard-to-be-governed passion of youth had hurried me frequently into intrigues with low women that fell in my way." When he married, another woman was already pregnant with his child--a son he took into his home and had his wife raise.

Franklin is best remembered for other things, of course. His still-famous Poor Richard's Almanac helped him secure enough financial freedom as a printer to retire and devote himself to the study of electricity (which began, amusingly, with experiments on chickens). His mind never rested: He invented bifocals, the armonica (a musical instrument made primarily of glass), and, in old age, a mechanical arm that allowed him to reach books stored on high shelves. He served American interests as a diplomat in Europe; without him, France might not have intervened in the American Revolution. He helped draft the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. He possessed a sense of humor, too. In 1776, when John Hancock urged the colonies to "hang together," Franklin is said to have commented, "We must indeed all hang together, or most assuredly we shall all hang separately." Franklin's accomplishments were so numerous and varied that they threaten to read like a laundry list. Yet Brands pours them into an engrossing narrative, and they leap to life on these pages as the grand story of an exceptional man. The First American is an altogether excellent biography. --John J. Miller ... Read more

Reviews (111)

5-0 out of 5 stars The polymath who gave America a fine start
Being a scientist and the son of a printer, I have always been intrigued with Franklin, the man who encompassed all my family's interests single-handedly. H. W. Brands' book is a wonderful addition to the school of knowledge of one of our most interesting founding fathers. Well written, this book is notably more readable than the typical arid biography. Especially laudable is Brands' coordination of simultaneous events in the colonies and Europe, which he relates in a clear, coordinated and concise manner, avoiding confusing backtracking in parallel timelines.

Brands' theme in this book clearly tracks the arc of Franklin life, from loyal English colonial subject to American Revolutionary advocate. While building a strong career as publisher, Franklin manages to build an infrastructure of public works in Philadelphia, including library and fire department, a colonial postal system, and defense force against hostile Indians. All the while, he gains an international reputation as a scientist and philosopher, and late in life, statesman par excellance.

Brands is to be commended for giving us this well sourced and detailed book, which clearly relates the amazing life of a complex and fascinating American.

5-0 out of 5 stars Outstanding Biography
When I first saw this book available for sale, I could not wait to read it. Other founding fathers, such as Washington, Adams and Jefferson have had numerous biographies devoted to them and their role in the American Revolution. Benjamin Franklin was long overdue for a new biography and H.W. Brands has supplied an excellent chapter on one of the most illustrious founding fathers.

The book demonstrates the rise of Franklin from a younger son in a large family in Boston to a well known and respected printer in Philadelphia. Based on extreme hard work, frugality and ghe ability to impress power men, Franklin quickly becomes a force in the city. The most interesting think about this point in his life is the agility of his mind. Never content to simply wonder why, Franklin educates himself in such diverse areas as philosophy, science, mechnical engineering, etc. The classic American dream of rags to riches is truly demonstrate via the life of Franklin.

Later in his life, Franklin spent many years in England as the colonial agent for Pennsylvania. His fame as an amateur scientist through his experiments with electricity meant he was already well known in England. Franklin himself loved England during this time in his life and the author points out that it took quite a bit of abuse from the English politicians to turn him away from pursuing reconciliation with the Mother Country.

Once he knew that America must achieve independence and at the age of 70 (!), Franklin returned to Philadelphia and began the exciting process of fighting for independence and setting up a new country. Soon after, he went to France to persuade the French government to help the fledgling country. Later still, he worked on the development of the U.S. Constitution. In the history of man, it is difficult to find a man whose life encompasses such a wide range of achievement.

The author does a fine job of drawing upon Franklin's own words to illustrate his life. The writing flows smoothly and covers most areas of his life in sufficient detail. Only one small complaint- I wish more would have been discussed regarding his private life, especially his marrige.

5-0 out of 5 stars History Comes Alive
Although a 700+ page biography of a man dead 200 years sounds daunting, in this case nothing could be further from the truth. Franklin's story is an amazing one, which the author tells in a style both fast and entertaining. He never goes into more detail than the casual reader (me) would like, but gives just enough historical perspective and philosophical framework to place Franklin in his time. Franklin's life was so full and far-ranging that it couldn't be covered in less than 700 well-manicured pages. I found it compulsively readable, despite the size. Truly he lived in "interesting times" and showed himself to be a man equal to every challenge he faced -- and quite a few left to future generations.

The true measure of a biography may be in getting the reader to CARE about the subject, and in this Brands succeeds unconditionally. Even from the distance of 200 years Franklin's inevitable passing hit me hard, moving me to tears of sorrow.

THAT is good writing.

5-0 out of 5 stars Scholarly Work on an American Icon
H.W. Brands must have been a doozy back at school. Once given an assignment for a research paper I can see Brands asking "Can I do twice as many references as required?"

I'm poking fun a little to make the point that this is a scholarly and well-researched portrait of Franklin. Brands doesn't seem to make any points that are not backed up by some written reference, and any time there is speculation Brands' language makes it clear that this is a thought extrapolated from available knowledge.

I almost wanted to give the work 4 rather than 5 stars because my initial response was that although the book was good, I also thought that if there's anything this book needs, it's a little pruning. This biography is so exhaustively complete that there is little time to pause. ALL of the information is presented, and it got a little mentally tiring separating the wheat from the chaff. (Does this make me like the Emperor who informs Mozart his new opera has "too many notes"?) From the language of this book Mr. Franklin's early work in the printing business in Philadelphia comes across with as much force as his later participation in the drafting of the Declaration of Independence.

Brands gives us a good feel for Benjamin Franklin's standing in the world community - not only in Philadelphia and America, but also in Europe and around the world. We also get a little of a taste for Franklin's indulgences in woman and for the periods in his life when he was reluctant to assume the role of "family man".

At the end when the great citizen Dr. Franklin passed away James Madison passed the news to the new congress and suggested that a National Period of Mourning be observed - a measure that must have been one of the first official acts of Congress to pass immediately and unanimously. The word quickly spread to France where their assembly also unanimously voted to immediately don black to mourn The First American.

Among Biographies, in particular of our Founding Fathers, this one stands up well, and should for as long as people care to read about the amazing Benjamin Franklin.

5-0 out of 5 stars Ben Franklin was the prototypical geek
The founding fathers have been in danger of becoming mere icons for some time now -- Washington the military man, Hamilton the royalist, Jefferson the renaissance man, and Franklin, the comic foil. "Yes, we must indeed all hang together, or most assuredly we shall all hang separately," Franklin quipped at the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

But in this book, H.W. Brands lays out a broader, more important role for Franklin. Besides being the most famous American to the rest of the world, Brands argues, Franklin was the first American to recognize that the colonies could never achieve an acceptable freedom from Parliament within the British Empire, and would therefore have to fight to achieve full independence.

He was also the prototypical geek. Though he lacked formal education, Franklin had an amazing ability to arrive at the truth of a subject through observation and experimentation. His contributions on electricity and heating (the Franklin Stove) are well known, but Brands covers others in fields from oceanography to physiology to opthalmology.

An inveterate (if inexpert) chessplayer and skirt-chaser, Franklin's family life is fascinating and new to me. He fathered an illegitimate son, William, of an unknown mother before marrying Deborah Read; Franklin and Deborah raised him. Later, they would have a son (somewhat improbably named Francis Folger Franklin, and called Franky) who died of smallpox after the family failed to inoculate him, and a daughter, Sally. Franklin won William appointments as a deputy postmaster and later as royal governor of New Jersey, but when the revolution came, William sided with the crown. It was a blow to Franklin, who never reconciled with his son. He had a major role in raising William's illegitimate son, Temple, and another grandchild, Benjamin Bache (Sally's son).

His relationship with his wife was also somewhat curious. In 1757, Franklin essentially moved to England to represent the Pennsylvania Assembly with the English government (then under George II -- he later would be the agent of Massachusetts, Georgia, and New Jersey, as well), while Deborah stayed behind. He would spend 16 of the next 18 years in London, and 8 of the following 10 in France, but Deborah stayed in Philadelphia. She claimed a fear of ocean travel kept her from traveling, and Franklin wrote her constantly, but it's a heck of a way to run a marriage.

Franklin simplifies the biographer's job somewhat by the very volume of material he left behind. As a printer, he published Poor Richard's Almanac, and innumberable broadsides, pamphlets, newspaper articles, and memoirs. As a politician, he contributed to the Declaration, to several constitutions for the state of Pennsylvania (he was head of the Pennsylvania Assembly before the war, and 3 times president of the state after), and the the U.S. Constitution -- Brands credits Franklin with the compromise allowing state legislatures to elect 2 members each to the Senate, while the House of Representatives was elected by population (initial proposals would have had the Senate elected by the House). And as a celebrity, his letters were almost invariably saved, and provide insights into his remarkable perspective on the world.

There's a vogue of Revolutionary era non-fiction right now, including David McCullough's "John Adams" (Adams disliked Franklin pretty intensely, so this might be a good pair to read), "Founding Brothers: The Revolutionary Generation," by Joseph J. Ellis, and "The American Sphinx: The Character of Thomas Jefferson," but the history-minded geek will probably prefer The First American. ... Read more


88. Benjamin Franklin
by Edmund S. Morgan
list price: $28.00
our price: $18.48
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0300095325
Catlog: Book (2002-10)
Publisher: Yale University Press
Sales Rank: 24758
Average Customer Review: 3.63 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Benjamin Franklin is perhaps the most remarkable figure in American history: the greatest statesman of his age, he played a pivotal role in the formation of the American republic. He was also a pioneering scientist, a bestselling author, the country's first postmaster general, a printer, a bon vivant, a diplomat, a ladies' man, and a moralist-and the most prominent celebrity of the eighteenth century.Franklin was, however, a man of vast contradictions, as Edmund Morgan demonstrates in this brilliant biography. A reluctant revolutionary, Franklin had desperately wished to preserve the British Empire, and he mourned the break even as he led the fight for American independence. Despite his passion for science, Franklin viewed his groundbreaking experiments as secondary to his civic duties. And although he helped to draft both the Declaration of Independence and the American Constitution, he had personally hoped that the new American government would take a different shape. Unraveling the enigma of Franklin's character, Morgan shows that he was the rare individual who consistently placed the public interest before his own desires.

Written by one of our greatest historians, Benjamin Franklin offers a provocative portrait of America's most extraordinary patriot. ... Read more

Reviews (35)

2-0 out of 5 stars Unconstrained by linear logic, a difficult book to follow
Benjamin Franklin's life is one of the most fascinating in American life--he was a diplomat, legislator, printer and scientist. In this admittedly short biography in an admittedly crowded field (there have been a handful of similar books published in recent years), Edmund Morgan attempts to give us an impression of the character of the man.

He starts with his athleticism, moves on to his views of religion and morals, and so on. Those who are unfamiliar with the factual details of Franklins life will be confused by the sudden appearance of details: Referring to his wife, Morgan writes: "He spent the last ten years of her life away from her in London." This comes as a shock as we haven't yet been told he spent so much time in the mother country.

Morgan readily admits that the work is based largely on a recent compilation of Franklin documents on disk ("...and not much else")and doesn't offer original research.

In sum, this becomes a difficult book to read and cannot be recommended except perhaps as an adjunct to Franklin-devotees who've already finished reading several more orthodox biographies.

4-0 out of 5 stars insightful look at "the ornament of the New World"
"Let all Men know thee, but no man know thee thoroughly." So advised Dr. Franklin, and so he lived. It is difficult to know any historical figure, especially as his contemporaries knew him, and Franklin's being a multifaceted, sometimes enigmatic person makes knowing him particularly challenging--and also extremely interesting. But Edmund S. Morgan, relying on the thirty-six currently published volumes (with more on the way) of Franklin's writings, does an admirable job of introducing us to this famous Founder.

It is not Morgan's intention to offer an exhaustive treatment of Franklin's life. Rather, he paints a portrait of the man's character, personality, and opinions and shows how these traits came through in what Franklin did. The picture of Franklin that emerges here is one of a curious, industrious, energetic man, one who enjoys the company of others (particularly women--and younger women at that), one who is devoted to public service, one who dislikes controversy and scandal. He uses his considerable talents to benefit his fellow man (and himself) and to improve the world around him, as he did for Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and eventually for the nascent United States. Morgan traces three major ideas running through many of Franklin's actions--(1) his belief in voluntary associations for mutual assistance, such as the fire company and library in Philadelphia; (2) the goal, ultimately abandoned, of uniting the American colonies with England in an Anglo-American empire, a single political community destined for greatness; and (3) his belief that what is right is that which is beneficial. It is also interesting, and more than a little surprising, to note, as well, that from 1757 to his death in 1790, Franklin spent only eight years in his native land.

Readers of this volume will inevitably want to turn to more in-depth biographies of Franklin, or perhaps even to his own writings. But for a brief and insightful picture of the man, either as introduction or re-acquaintance, I can imagine no better work than this one.

3-0 out of 5 stars Not bad, but not the one to get
I feel bad saying this, but the reality is that if you are interested in learning about one of history's most interesting and influential men, you'll be better served reading Walter Isaacson's biography of Franklin. Isaacson's is more comprehensive, more detailed, more incisive, but most of all, is a total pleasure to read, whereas I found Morgan's sometimes difficult to plow through. "Plowing through" would be worth it if this book offered perspectives and facts not found in the Isaacson book, but that is not the case.

As I said, this one isn't bad, but why get it, when the Isaacson one is superior?

4-0 out of 5 stars Benjamin Franklin
(...)

Benjamin Franklin; we know about the remarkable things he did, but how do we really know him as a man? That is Edmund S. Morgan's question. Through Franklin's letters, newspapers, discoveries, autobiography, and a certain disk entitled, the Papers of Benjamin Franklin, Morgan has been compelled to write this book to give the world a taste of who Franklin was. Franklin was born on January 17, 1706, full of curiosity and vigor. He always felt the need to explore the world around him and to study the things that most took for granted. He could often be found outdoors walking about, taking in the scenery around him. He had an uncanny ability to look at everyday things with surprise and inquisitiveness. This endowment is what drove Franklin to make so many advances in human knowledge. He also thoroughly enjoyed being in the company of good friends; playing chess, telling jokes, and singing songs. He was a very sociable and companionable man; he was always looking to help people. Franklin also had his own views of religion. When Franklin was young he did a lot of thinking and writing on his morals. He came to believe that "Sin is not harmful because it is forbidden, but it is forbidden because it is harmful...Nor is a duty beneficial because it is commanded, but it is commanded because it is beneficial." Franklin never attended a church regularly and didn't take kindly to the Bible, though he undoubtedly believed in God as the creator. Franklin did not believe in a God who divided his people into those he intended to welcome to heaven and those he would condemn to Hell. Franklin even went on to write a lengthy list of virtues in his autobiography part 2. He always tried to do what he thought God wanted of him; he always tried to help the public and the economy. Franklin married Deborah Read in 1730 shortly after his first son, William, was born. The mother of this son is still unknown. When Franklin was entering his forties, he began studying about and experimenting with electricity. Only one kind of electricity was known back then, and that was static electricity, the kind that produces a shock. In the 1740's a collection of Leyden jars for storing static electricity was sent to Franklin by an English friend. Without delay, Franklin started experimenting with it. He soon discovered that a metal rod with a pointed end would attract a spark from a greater distance than a blunt one. He then went on to suggest the experiment with the kite and the key to prove that lightning was electric. His experiment was successful, and suddenly he was famous. Though, that is certainly not the only thing Franklin would become famous for. He helped write the Declaration of Independence, secured the Alliance with France, negotiated the treaty of peace with England, and partook in the convention that drafted the United States Constitution to replace the Articles of Confederation. Franklin once wrote to his mother that when his life was over, "I would rather have it said, he lived usefully, than, he died rich." Franklin died on April 17, 1790. However, I feel saying that Benjamin Franklin lived usefully is a blatant understatement. Franklin was a man of great heart. He accomplished more things in his eighty-four years than most men could achieve in two-hundred. Benjamin Franklin was essential to the world.

4-0 out of 5 stars Fascinating
This is both a fascinating book, and it is about one of the
most fascinating subjects, Benjamin Franklin.
The book is a little on the short side, but the author explains
he kept it a bit limited in scope on purpose. He intends for
it to be readable,and he wants to concentrate on Franklin's public service; plus, he tends to focus on his overseas assignments on behalf of the 13 Colonies, as well as his later
service on behalf of the new United States.
No hero of our Revolution is more complex and diverse than
Franklin, and his public service far exceeds that of any other
of the Founders. We tend to forget how old Franklin was at the
time of some of his greatest service. After nearly 10 years in
England, trying to pursuade the English authorities in Parliament of the wisdom of keeping their American colonies within the British Empire by giving them equal status in that
Empire, and finally failing, he returned home to Philadelphia.
And the next day, he was elected to the Second Continental Congress.
As he entered the State House in Philadelphia to begin his term
in that Congress, it is noted that he served in that same building years before in the colonial assembly. And when he
served in the colonial government, some of the greatest of Founders weren't born yet; at that time, for example, Patrick
Henry, Thomas Jefferson, John Hancock and John Adams had not even been born. Franklin served all those years, and as the
Revolution was progressing, and he was in his 70s, the new government sent him to France to procure loans and to negotiate
treaties with France to help in their fight for Independence.
That he succeeded is evident, and he spent several years in France serving his new country.
The book reveals, in very interesting detail, that Franklin was
so revered and so respected in England, that while he was living
there, fighting for better understanding by Parliament, he was
blamed for everything that was happening in the Colonies. When
an assembly in Bostom forwarded new demands to King George III,
which inflamed Parliament, the Solicitor General called Franklin
the "great director" of those events and demands. The author
very nicely points out that the probably author of those demands
from Bostom, Samuel Adams, needed no direction from Franklin on
how to inflame independence passions.
When the Boston Tea Party took place in Boston harbor, in protest against Parliament's tax on imported tea, the Secretary

for Colonial Affairs told Parliament the whole affair looked
like it came from "...the Franklin school of politics."
About that time, Franklin's English friends advised him he was
facing arrest, and many were afraid for his physical safety.
But he continued doing his job for the Colonies, and although
he met with much frustration in dealing with British authorities, he never wavered in his efforts to help the Colonies.
Franklin showed style, energy, and he exercised more diplomacy
in both England and France than we can imagine, and this author
does a nice job of pointing out his efforts and accomplishments. ... Read more


89. Benjamin Franklin: Writings (Library of America)
by Benjamin Franklin, J.A. Leo Lemay
list price: $45.00
our price: $29.70
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0940450291
Catlog: Book (1987-09-01)
Publisher: Library of America
Sales Rank: 40101
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

The most complete one-volume collection of ever published of a brilliant public figure and the most powerful writer of his time, including "The Autobiography" in a new edition based on Franklin's manuscript. ... Read more

Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars Too Long Overlooked
This collection of Franklin's writing display his quick mind, mathematical gifts, great sense of humor, detachment in crisis, and the razor-sharp diplomatic mind which did more than supposed for the American cause (more so than than Adams and others thought). An American genius and a true seer of note. A book to be enjoyed again and again.

5-0 out of 5 stars Best Modern Compilation of Franklin's Writings
The Library of America should be commended for preserving the works of Benjamin Franklin. This is the finest compilation of Franklin's writings still in print.

The book is organized and presented in chronological order. The first section contains Franklin's writings between 1722-1726. This section contains the famous "Silence Dogood" works. The second section consists of writings between 1726-1757. This section contains the "Busy Body" pieces and the writings from the Philadelphia Gazette, amongst other works. The third section consists of writings which date between 1757-1775. The fourth section consists of writings between 1776-1785. The fifth section consists of writings between 1785-1790. And the final two sections are "Poor Richard's Almanack" and "The Autobiography."

Moreover, the sections contain personal letters between Franklin and other notable men such as David Hume, Lord Kames, John Pringle, Benjamin Rush, etc. Also, religious writings, philosophy, political writings and the like are present in this single volume. In fact, there is about 1500 pages of just Franklin's writings. Additionally, in the back of the book, there is a very detailed chronology of Franklin's life describing notable things which occurred between his birth and death.

This is a great text for those who are wanting a very detailed volume of Franklin's writings. However, it is also a great compilation for those who simply want to sit down and get a sample of the works of Franklin to find out what type of man he was, what he believed, what he taught, his sense of humor and the like.

This book has been one of the best investments that I have made in my collection of American Revolutionary (Founders) history. I highly recommend this work.

5-0 out of 5 stars The best, most comprehensive introduction to Franklin
Many of Benjamin Franklin's biographers follow up their treatments of his life and work with an edited collection of his writings, as if to concede that he is his own best presenter. Any reader interested in Franklin should therefore set the biographies aside for a time and turn first to this superb Library of America compilation of Franklin's writings. Spanning his life from his early humorous writings (penned at the age of 16) to letters he wrote in the last year of his life (at 84), it is the single best, because most comprehensive, introduction to Franklin.

Carl Van Doren ended his classic biography of Franklin by describing him as "a harmonious human multitude." The phrase has become shorthand for those who try to encompass Franklin's activities as printer, journalist, polemicist, political thinker, writer, economist, demographer, scientist (or "natural philosopher" in the 18th-century phrase), lobbyist, diplomat, and sage. More recent Fra! nklin scholars, such as Esmond Wright and Robert Middlekauff, concede his complexity, but doubt the harmony holding together his various interests, activities, priorities, friendships, and hostilities; they also note that Franklin's genial exterior cloaked a massive and implacable egotism and an unsuspected capacity for strong and often bitter emotion.

All these facets of Franklin emerge from this superbly-edited volume. J. A. Leo Lemay, one of the nation's leading scholars of Franklin's life and work, has produced a volume fully worthy of Franklin and the Library of America series; it will be indispensable to all future students of Benjamin Franklin, of colonial and Revolutionary America, and of the foundations of American literature, science, politics, and government. -- Richard B. Bernstein, Adjunct Professor of Law, New York Law School; Daniel M. Lyons Visiting Professor in American History, Brooklyn College/CUNY (1997-1998); Book Review Editor for Constitutional Books,! H-LAW; and Senior Research Fellow, Council on Citizenship ! Education, Russell Sage College. ... Read more


90. Jackson & Lee: Legends In Gray : The Paintings of Mort Kunstler
by Mort Kunstler, James I. Robertson
list price: $34.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1558533338
Catlog: Book (1995-09-01)
Publisher: Rutledge Hill Press
Sales Rank: 300492
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars THE EYES HAVE IT ! !
I have read and "studied" several of Mr.Kunstler's books and enjoyed them all.I particularly enjoy the artists comments as to why he does some of the things the way he does.This book is different in that his art is not accompanied by his explanations but by another writer's text.This text is very good and really brings out the personalities of these great characters.As one who believes that it is important to understand the personalities of the people involved if one is to understand why things happened the way they did;this is very well done.
As to the title of my review;I find eyes fascinating.The first thing I look at in Mr.Kunstler's paintings is the eyes.Let me point out Confederate Sunset on pg.56 both Lee's and Jackson's eyes are very beady and staring resulting in them looking like figures in a wax museum;giving the painting a posed and unnatural feeling.Other examples are of Jackson on pages 38and 40.Note the difference in Jackson's eyes on page44.Another thing I like to study is how some paintings look very stiff,posed almost like a diorama in a museum,eg.The Return of Stuart on pg.126.Compare this to The Last Council on pg.102 which is so realistic. Am I alone in seeing this aspect of Mr.Kunstler's work?

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent combination of art and history!
Outstanding compilation of information, and the best images of primiere Civil War artist Mort Kunstler. A "must have" for all serious students of the American Civil War. ... Read more


91. The Frank Sinatra Reader
by Steven Petkov, Leonard Mustazza
list price: $16.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0195113896
Catlog: Book (1997-04-01)
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Sales Rank: 132867
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

The Chairman of the Board has inspired a great many emotions--from hero-worship to withering contempt--and you'll find most of them documented in this intelligent compendium. The editors have dredged up some wonderful relics, like Bruce Bliven's 1944 rumination on what makes the Voice so magical in the first place ("Undoubtedly, just plain sex has a great deal to do with the whole matter"). But the essays, reviews, and memoirs cover every segment of Sinatra's career, including the end-game triumph (or travesty) of the best-selling "Duets." ... Read more

Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Inside View of the #1 Megastar of them all!!
From Bobby Sox fave to Sultan of Swoon to the Fall and Great Comeback, it is just about all here, except for the very last years from the mid-1990's to the end. This volume is a collection of essays surveying the vast realm of an incredible career. The clear links between his peerless Capitol recordings,and his own life are explained,as are the demanding sessions themselves, his always being in charge with a lot of help from his friends. Every piece here is worthwhile, my favorite being Gay Talese's FRANK SINATRA HAS A COLD (1966)To quote:"Sinatra with a cold is Picasso without paint,Ferrari without fuel..A Sinatra with a cold can, in a small way,send vibrations through the entertainment industry and beyond as surely as a President can, suddenly sick, shake the national economy." A great fun of a read! Not for Frank fanatics only.

5-0 out of 5 stars A must for anyone who loves Ole Blue Eyes
This book is like an almanac of information on Frankie. I had the pleasure of reading it at a friends house, and it was just great. I highly recommend it. Another good one, is "Why Sinatra Matters." Both give a glimpse into a man that we all love. ... Read more


92. The Last Lion: Winston Spencer Churchill, Alone 1932-1940
by William Manchester
list price: $50.00
our price: $33.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0316545120
Catlog: Book (1988-10-28)
Publisher: Little, Brown
Sales Rank: 33421
Average Customer Review: 4.91 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (23)

5-0 out of 5 stars An Excellent History of Churchill's Wilderness Years
As one reads William Manchester's second volume on Churchill, one is struck by Churchill's uncanny grasp of the threat of Nazi Germany, and his many attempts to warn Britain of its peril. Like Cassandra in Greek mythology, though, Churchill's predictions are not believed, and he is only included in the War Cabinet when war was inevitable. William Manchester's book is thoroughly researched, and is at least as good as that of Churchill's official biographer, Martin Gilbert, with one important difference: Manchester's book is written on a far larger canvas, and the level of detail he is able to devote to Churchill is far greater -- and the subject is more than worthy of it. Mandatory reading for anyone studying Churchill, a good prelude to read before reading Churchill's own five volume history of World War II in that it gives insight into Churchill's mind. On a personal level, I know that Mr. Manchester is advanced in years, and I cannot help thinking, in my selfishness as a historian, that I hope he completes volume III soon. It would be a tragedy if the task of completing this wonderful history proves to be too much for him.

5-0 out of 5 stars Current Events
As the crisis in Iraq developed in the post-911 days, I found myself thinking more and more about this second volume of the life of Winston Churchill. I was reminded of the essential differences between appeasement and the need to take agressive measures to stop agression. William Manchester does an outstanding job of spelling out the state of the world at this time leading up to World War II. He details, from a British perspective, every move as we watch disappointedly from an historical vantage point. Churchill's eventual elevation to Prime Minister comes not as a triumph, but more like an act of desperation. All along the way, knowing who the bad guy is (and just how bad he really is) we are disappointed (or is it disgusted) at each step of retreat.

I am in the midst of reading Shirer's "The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich" and, while I can sing it's praises, it does not do as impressive job on this subject as Manchester's "Alone". Someting about Manchester's writing makes you feel that you're in the midst of everything that's happening.

I can think of no better a time to read this book than in the present world political situation. I'll leave it to the reader to decided how similar the Iraq situation is to that of Nazi Germany. However, the various ways the world and this country react to the situation brings Europe of the 1930's to mind.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Captivating Read
As Hitler was gaining power in Germany, Churchill was warning his fellow countrymen of the dangers thatlurked. He did not receive a listening hear. At a speech before a University audience in Oxford when he told the crowd it was "essential for us to be safe in our island home," the audience burst into laughter. The laughter grew so raucous that Churchill could not continue. These are the sort of snapshots that Manchester captures that makes this book such a delightful read.

Churchill was written off more than once. This second snapshot describes what happened:
"Joseph Stalin, receiving a British delegation headed by Nancy and George Bernard Shaw, had bluntly asked her about Winston's political prospects.Her eyes widened. 'Churchill?' she had said. She gave a scornful little laugh and replied, 'Oh, he's finished.'" These are just two examples of the thoroughness of this well-written book. The author takes a complicated era and makes it understandable.

4-0 out of 5 stars Wilderness Years
I liked this treatise on the life of Churchill. His wilderness years when those who treated him with disdain thought of him as a wash up.

This was his time to bide his time, in order to gain his composure for his future use.

Anyone in the oxbow of life can gain insights on how to use time rightly until the attainment of a goal.

Churchill did not just bide his time, he used it to his advantage.

One day I hope Manchester finishes volume III.....

5-0 out of 5 stars Superstar
I've read a lot of books in my life, but I guess I had to wait to find one of the best books I've ever read. It is hard to believe that a "history book" could be a page-turner, but I literally could not put the first volume down. Or the second. Manchester is a fantastic writer and his admiration and enthusiasm for the Last Lion is evident. Do yourself a very big favor and read these books, Vol. 1 and 2. I sure hope there's a Vol. 3 in the works. ... Read more


93. Michael Jackson: The Magic and the Madness
by J. Randy Taraborrelli
list price: $21.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1559720646
Catlog: Book (1991-05-01)
Publisher: Birch Lane Press
Sales Rank: 529053
Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

"Some of the rumors are true, some of the rumors are false, and a lot of the tales are just plain weird.There are speculations about sex, allegations of unchecked greed and suggestions of a highly dysfunctional family."

THE BOSTON GLOBE

After hundreds of interviews, celebrity biography J. Randy Taraborrelli tackes the rujors andinnendo that hover over the extraordinarily popular and talented family from Gary, Indiana.He traces the real story behind Michael's extensive plastic surgery; his bizarre publicity stunts; the mini-Disneyland built for his private use; the exciting Motown days of chart-busting records and tours; the phenomenal solo success that has brought Michael undreamed-of wealth and also great personal pain, and much more.It's the whole Jackson Family saga, and it's all in here.

... Read more

Reviews (23)

5-0 out of 5 stars WHAT A BOOK!!!!
I am a huge mj fan, when i first saw this book in the book shop i read on till the shop manager told me to stop!!I had to buy it. I took it home and just could not put it down. The detail it goes into is unbelievable!So much is revealed about the "King of Pop". This book answers all the questions you would ask if you were talking to michael yourself. Taraborrelli tells us of Michaels childhood and his problems with his father. Never before heard facts are shared, such as his relationship with Tatum O'Neil and his immense feelings for Diana Ross. Not only does this biography help us understand Michael, it also tells us a great deal about his brothers and sisters. Before reading this book i was pretty sure the horrible accusations about Michael were untrue, but now i have read this book i would bet everything i own on Michael not being found guilty!!This is a must have book for not just MJ fans but for anyone who has heard of him. Basically everyone in the civilized world should read it!!!!!!

5-0 out of 5 stars THE BEST BIOGRAPHY EVER WRITTEN!
J. Randy Taborelli has written a compelling and engrossing biography of Jackson and his family. Taborelli is obviously a huge fan of Michael and his brother's music. His analysis of their career is brilliant. Taborelli's insight into the record business is fascinating. Especially interesting is his knowledge of Berry Gordy and Motown. I really enjoyed reading about The Jackson 5's split from Motown to go to Epic records. Taborelli tells truth about the jacksons; warts and all. But unlike sleazy talentless biographers, Taborelli puts heart and humor into his work. Taborelli, like the people who would want to buy his book, obviosly cares a great deal about Michael and his music.

5-0 out of 5 stars A BETTER UNDERSTANDING
I bought this book about two years ago. I consider myself a fan of Michael's and sometimes wondered why does he do the things that he do? But after reading this book, mostly everything that was said or published about him were fabricated by his people to make him seem more interesting. However, it backfired in the worst way. I realized that he has alot of insecurities, and tries too hard to live up to everyones expectations of him. Also, he's been hurt and betrayed quite often. Not to say that he didn't also betray a friend(ie. Paul McCartney). Even through his current legal troubles, you still get a better understanding of him in this book. On a serious note, if he can ever get out of this situation, he definitely needs to talk to a professional about his past and present, so he can move on to the future.

5-0 out of 5 stars A book to read and RE-read
excellent excellent book. Highly entertaining, detailed, objective. Forget about the other MJ biographies, cuz this book gives you the low-down on everything, the "behind-the-scenes".

It covers not only his life, but the inner-motivations of his decisions, mind, thoughts, reasoning, relationships especially. Excellent!

5-0 out of 5 stars It made me feel sorry for Michael
Although I don't condone his behavior, I can understand now why Jackson acts the way he does.

This guy had a childhood from hell and the family weirdness goes WAAAAY back....from the ridiculous names to the multiple divorces to the cold, unfeeling parents who are convinced child abuse is discipline.

Joe Jackson belongs in a cage. Katherine could have done SO much better than this arrogant womanizer who seems to enjoy terrorizing children.

The book did something I never thought would happen: it made me feel sorry for Michael Jackson. ... Read more


94. The Diamond Cutter : The Buddha on Strategies for Managing Your Business and Your Life
by GESHE MICHAEL ROACH
list price: $23.95
our price: $16.77
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0385497903
Catlog: Book (2000-02)
Publisher: Doubleday
Sales Rank: 100961
Average Customer Review: 4.05 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

Other Buddhist books offer you a path to happiness, Geshe Michael Roach offers a path to wealth. Roach, who while being a monk helped build a $100 million business, demonstrates how ancient notions in The Diamond Cutter sutra can help you succeed, and if you're in business that means to make money, a lot of it. Drawing on lessons he learned in the diamond business and years in Buddhist monasteries, Roach shows how taking care of others is the ultimate path to taking care of oneself, even--especially--in business. As he puts it, you have to engage in "mental gardening," which means doing certain practical things that will form new habits that will create an ideal reality for you. If this sounds a little outrageous, his very precise instructions are down to earth and address numerous specific issues common to the business/management world. Through this practice, you will become a considerate, generous, introspective, creative person of immense integrity, and that will be the key to your wealth. At first this book comes off like a gimmick and the writing isn't without rough patches, but page by page, as Roach introduces you to the practical details and real-life examples, his arguments become more convincing. A cross between the Dalai Lama's ethics and Stephen Covey's Seven Habits, The Diamond Cutter will have you gardening a path to the bank. --Brian Bruya ... Read more

Reviews (21)

5-0 out of 5 stars A Splendid Read for Buddhists and Non-Buddhists.
I had never heard of Michael Roach until I searched out Shoutcast (Internet Radio) and found the Tibetan Buddhist station. Being of that tradition, I was delighted to find the station.

The program that was on at that time was Dharma talks by Michael on The Heart Sutra, a most important Buddhist teaching.

I was so taken with his messages and the way he could get these deep ideas across so easily that I wanted to learn more about him. That's when I discovered that he had a new book out, The Diamond Cutter. So I bought a copy at Amazon.

Michael spent many years in the New York Diamond industry. He explains that he was attracted to diamonds because they are the hardest form in the universe.

This book is about business. It is about the problems that we all encounter in business daily. And it tells us how to handle the problem and why every problem has a cause, perhaps not in this lifetime but in some lifetime.

Michael clearly explains why some people who are greedy and unkind are successful. No, it's nothing they've done in this life but rather they did something of merit in another life that brought the wealth in this lifetime. But in another lifetime they will reap the Karma they're now sowing.

He tells us that if we wish to be wealthy, we need to be generous with our money and our time.

Michael uses his vast knowledge of the diamond industry to teach business ethics from a Buddhist perspective based on the all-important teaching of Lord Buddha in His Diamond Cutter (Vajrachchedika sutra).

I highly recommend this wonderful book to anyone who cares about their business, their relationships, their finances and their life in general.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Real Thing
I first have to say that I did not buy this so much for the business angle--I'm more just on the lookout for any new Buddhist material I can find. This is probably the freshest book in the realm of "American Buddhism" that I've read in the last year. I hadn't heard of Roach before, but I now feel that he truly is one of the most important Buddhist teachers in the U.S. today. (If you haven't already seen it you should look at the interview Amazon did with him.) The writing in Diamond Cutter isn't always so great, but Roach has a superior talent for explaining elements of Tibetan Buddhism in a way that is light years ahead of many other books out there in terms of accessibility. Perhaps that's because he is American born, so he really knows how to communicate with his contemporaries, but even beyond that he appears to have a great mind. This isn't great as a Buddhist primer, but if you are at all familiar with Buddhism you'll probably get some real insights out of this one.

5-0 out of 5 stars A book that changed my business
I run a small business for more than 10 years now and have my share of ups and downs, from facing near bankruptcy to hitting big contracts. But whatever the outcome, I am always short of money and I am constantly struggling to make ends meet. That is, until I read this book. It has changed my business. I now find money flowing in without me chasing after it and I work less than before. To all of you out there who are struggling in business or in your personal life, buy this book and follow the principles. They work and they will make you a better person.

5-0 out of 5 stars Buddhism for open-minded sceptics
For all the "suits" out there: You've tried every business fad from empowerment to micromanagement; why not try something with a real track record?

As a busy manager, the book suited me perfectly. Geshe Roach gives you the no mumbo jumbo, how to test Buddhism in the work place guide. Most people who have studied Buddhism as deeply as Roach can't explain it well and especially to a business person. No such problems here. The book demonstrates his knowledge of real-life business situations enough to make him convincing for sceptical business people and explains only the salient points of Buddhist practice.

1-0 out of 5 stars Blood Diamonds
Sort of Buddha for dummies who want money type of book. When one reads about the West African bloobaths commited over these stupid little stones it might be a better use of Roachs' skills to start a boycott of diamonds ... Read more


95. You Learn by Living
by Eleanor Roosevelt
list price: $17.95
our price: $12.21
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0664244947
Catlog: Book (1983-09-01)
Publisher: Westminster John Knox Press
Sales Rank: 16994
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars Everyone should read this book
This is a little-known but delightful gem of a book. The inimitable Eleanor Roosevelt was a prolific author, but this effort is among her very best. Forged by adversity throughout her life, Eleanor was born into a privileged, wealthy family. Her father, Elliot, was Theodore Roosevelt's brother.

My favorite chapter is "The Right to Be an Individual." Mrs. Roosevelt stresses that individuality is something to be prized, yet people want to remain safe, surrounded by a group. She stresses we should strive against this and always be true to ourselves. This is a simple, yet eloquent philosophy. The entire book is full of wit, wisdom and some profound bits of advice. I am a better person for having read this book and I think everyone can take something meaningful from its pages.

5-0 out of 5 stars You Learn By Living Eleven Keys For A More Fulfilling Life
In this wise and highly personal book, one of the twentieth century's most famous and beloved first ladies - Eleanor Roosevelt - offers advice on how to create a satisfying life.

Offering her own philosophy on living, the woman who was called Fist Lady to the World leads readers on a path to confidence, education, maturity, and more.

You Learn By Living is a book that remains fascinating, inspirational, and relevant to late - twentieth - century readers.

The keys to the kind of life Mrs. Roosevelt describes are:

- Learning to Learn
- Fear the Great Enemy
- The Uses of Time
- The Difficult Art of Maturity
- Readjustments Is Endless
- Learning to Be Useful
- The Right to Be an Individual
- How to Get the Best Out of People
- Facing Responsibility
- How Everyone Can Take Part in Politics
- Learning to Be a Public Servant

5-0 out of 5 stars Read This Book!
This book is a gem. It is full of wonderful advice for living one's life in a full, satisfying, and unselfish way. It is the speaking out of a remarkable mind who was for decades the conscience of a nation. ... Read more


96. Let the Word Go Forth : The Speeches, Statements, and Writings of John F. Kennedy 1947 to 1963
by Theodore C. Sorenson
list price: $23.00
our price: $23.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0440504066
Catlog: Book (1991-10-05)
Publisher: Laurel
Sales Rank: 96380
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars There's still POWER in his words
Born after his death on the opposite side of Pacific, I cannot clearly imagine what America had been like during administration of JFK.

Soviet Union threatning US with nuclear missiles stationed in Cuba. Black young men actually denied to enter his university. West Berlin in blockade. Ok, it's impossible for us to compare difficulties of those with the threats today's US faces but for sure the one of JFK's can never have been easy.

One of the greatest abilities (personalities) in JFK is to encourage people, in their difficult times, with his absolute power, vitality and sincereity of abundance. As Sorensen pointed out, perhaps sometimes his words conveyed messages of what was beyond or above people, couldn't be achieved as it's simply too difficult.

Nevertheless in my opinion, statesmen have to tell LONG vision, things people don't want to hear but need to while politicians merely telling what people want to hear. He's supposed to have made "a step" in many subjects, which later leads to one "thousand miles" as he always said.

Recently I watched movie "13 days" and, very impressed with his decisiveness, I just happened to want to go through his speeches all over again to have bumped into this book on Amazon.com. With it in mind that the author, Ted Sorensen, was a speech writer of JFK, I believed this was the one. I wasn't wrong.

The book is very organized, subject by subject, which makes it easy to find what you need in this book although I read this from cover to cover. With statements and interviews included, let alone all important speeches, you can have a clear picture for creeds of JFK's.

Far more complicated and different as is the current world, simple and direct application of his wisdom might be not so realistic but, again, his power, vitality, sincerity and whatever are all in this book, which definitely moved world citizens at that time, and for sure could, in our time.

It might be different from reader to reader or from his social position to position, what impression you'll have from this book. One thing for sure is you'll find SOMETHING impressive, this I guarantee.

I, for one, am proud of this book being in my shelf from now on. Unfortunatelly the book seems to be out of stock for now, so just pick it up in market place, hard-cover version recommended, it endures.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Career, A Society, and How We Have Changed.
Whether you love John F. Kennedy or hate him, "Let the Word Go Forth" is a rewarding read for anyone interested in the 35th President or the America from which we are not very far removed. This book consists of excerpts from over 100 speeches made by John F. Kennedy during his political life. These is not a collection of quotations but a public career as portrayed in largely and totally complete speeches and statements. In these pages we are reminded of the lofty ideals, the wit and, a bit of the parochial politician which was John F. Kennedy.

For me, much of the value in this book lies not in what it tells us of Kennedy, but what it tells us about the country in which he lived. The things which were said, and which did not need to be said, and the language used tell us of an America different from the one in which we live today. To illustrate this I will discuss four of the speeches.

We begin with the Inaugural Address, probably Kennedy's most famous statement. The speech, which gave us several remembered lines, the most famous of which is "Ask not what your country can do for you,-ask what you can do for your country" is most notable for what it does not say. Read this speech from start to finish and you will find no mention of social security, health care, education, poverty, civil rights, highways or any of the domestic concerns which have held such center stage in recent public debate. It deals exclusively of foreign policy. What President since Kennedy would start his administration which such a challenge?

The second speech to which I would direct the reader's attention is the address to the Houston Ministerial Alliance on September 12, 1960. The purpose of the speech was to refute allegations that a Catholic would have a divided loyalty or would be subject to orders from the church hierarchy. The way in which Kennedy responded to the problem is felt by many to have done a great disservice to Catholic politicians. It is believed that Kennedy established the standard that, in order to be considered for office, Catholic candidates must establish that their religious beliefs will not be a factor in their decision making process. At the end of the speech, Kennedy was specifically confronted with a request that he request approval from the Vatican for his statement supporting the separation of church and state. What politician since then has been confronted with such a question?

The third speech to be considered is entitled "The City Upon a Hill" and was given to the Massachusetts legislature on January 9, 1961. In this speech Kennedy draws on the history of Massachusetts in establishing the code of conduct for those serving the Commonwealth. He lists four questions by which public servants will be judged: "were we men of courage...were we men of judgement...were we truly men of integrity...were we men of dedication." As one reads these stirring question with their elaborations, a realization dawns on the reader: There were no women in the Massachusetts legislature in 1961. I am sure that the wording would be different today.

The last speech which I would suggest for consideration is the acceptance speech at the Democratic National Convention, entitled "The Opening of the New Frontier." I bring this speech up because of the oft stated lament that the public is losing its sense of history, its ability to relate current conditions to conditions of the past in order to help us separate the principle from the pragmatism and the important from the trivial. In that speech, the nominee tells his listeners: "just as historians tell us that Richard I was not fit to fill the shoes of bold Henry II-and that Richard Cromwell was not fit to wear the mantle of his uncle {sic}-they might add in future years that Richard Nixon did not measure to the footsteps of Dwight D. Eisenhower." Overlooking the fact that Richard Cromwell succeeded his father and not his uncle, what contemporary candidate would trust his listeners to understand the reference to long gone English leaders? Is it the draining of the general fund of knowledge of our citizens which has lowered the level of our public discourse from the deep, rich speech of the Kennedy era to the shallow sound bites of today?

At the conclusion of "Let the Word Go Forth" one has a greater respect for the communication skills of our 35th President and an appreciation for the things which we, as a society have gained, and a longing for the things which we have lost. ... Read more


97. Abraham Lincoln and Civil War America: A Biography
by William E. Gienapp
list price: $17.95
our price: $17.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0195151003
Catlog: Book (2002-10-01)
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Sales Rank: 289881
Average Customer Review: 3.67 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

In Abraham Lincoln and Civil War America, historian William Gienapp provides a remarkably concise, up-to-date, and vibrant biography of the most revered figure in United States history. While the heart of the book focuses on the Civil War, Gienapp begins with a finely etched portrait of Lincoln's early life, from pioneer farm boy to politician and lawyer in Springfield, to his stunning election as sixteenth president of the United States. Students will see how Lincoln grew during his years in office, how he developed a keen aptitude for military strategy and displayed enormous skill in dealing with his generals, and how his war strategy evolved from a desire to preserve the Union to emancipation and total war.Gienapp shows how Lincoln's early years influenced his skills as commander-in-chief and demonstrates that, throughout the stresses of the war years, Lincoln's basic character shone through: his good will and fundamental decency, his remarkable self-confidence matched with genuine humility, his immunity to the passions and hatreds the war spawned, his extraordinary patience, and his timeless devotion.A former backwoodsman and country lawyer, Abraham Lincoln rose to become one of our greatest presidents. This biography offers a vivid account of Lincoln's dramatic ascension to the pinnacle of American history. ... Read more

Reviews (3)

1-0 out of 5 stars Slaveowner & Political Stooge
Lincoln was a slaveowner and a political stooge that duped the entire U.S. into a war that shouldn't have been fought. History should condemn this vile man.

5-0 out of 5 stars Abraham Lincoln And Civil War America
William Gienapp's Abraham Lincoln and Civil War America answers a longstanding need for a biography of Lincoln manageable in size, accessible in style, and wise and balanced in content. Lincoln appers on every page of the book and is never lost sight of in the welter of events. He emerges from the text a real believable person, an individual and persuasive assessment of Lincoln's leadership abilities, the finest such appraisal avilable anywhere.

5-0 out of 5 stars Abraham Lincoln in one slim volume.
This book is a welcome addition ot the already crowded Lincolnia bookself. The author is the presumed successor to the retired David Herbert Donald at Harvard University. Gienapp has produced a highly readable and concise version of a Lincoln biography that can be completed on a moderately long airplane trip(and it's quite portable unlike most hardcover books). While relatively short,this book is a sufficiently thorough treatment of the Civil War Lincoln. I especially enjoyed the author's analysis of the politician Lincoln who mastered his rivals, both Republican and Democrat. This a good book for either a new Lincoln /Civil War "buff" or a good refresher for a scholar of the times. ... Read more


98. What I Saw at the Revolution : A Political Life in the Reagan Era
by PEGGY NOONAN
list price: $19.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0394564952
Catlog: Book (1990-02-03)
Publisher: Random House
Sales Rank: 243231
Average Customer Review: 4.35 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

As a special assistant to the president, Peggy Noonan worked with Ronald Reagan, and with Vice President George H. W. Bush, on some of their most famous and memorable speeches. In her thoroughly engaging and critically acclaimed memoir, Noonan shows us the world behind the words. Her sharp and vivid portraits of the Reagans, Bush, and a host of Washington’s movers and shakers are rendered in inimitable, witty prose. And her priceless account of what it was like to be a speechwriter among bureaucrats, and a woman in the last bastion of male power, makes this a Washington memoir that breaks the mold—as spirited, sensitive, and thoughtful as Peggy Noonan herself. ... Read more

Reviews (26)

5-0 out of 5 stars YOU DON'T HAVE TO BE A REPUBLICAN TO LIKE IT....
...and indeed I am certainly NOT one by any stretch of the imagination. Noonan has written one great book about the presidency, life in the White House, speech writing, and the political process and how it interacts with the media. The portions of the book on how she wrote speeches for Reagan and Bush and how they got edited in the staffing process are particularly well-written, insightful, and at times downright funny. Noonan remains loyal to Reagan but she is not so blindered that she fails to note some of the short comings of his hands-off style. Her policy views are sometimes simplistic (you're left wondering if she thinks the world can be governed from what you learn in a Capra movie) but this is after all a memoir and she does a very good job of taking you on her trip. Well worth reading.

5-0 out of 5 stars You'll get a real fee for life at the White House
Heard the taped version of WHAT I SAW AT THE REVOLUTION,
written and read by Peggy Noonan . . . she was a special assistant to the president during the height of the Reagan era.

Noonan worked with him, and then vice-president Bush, on
some of their most famous and memorable speeches . . . she
eventually became a speechwriter for George Bush during his
first presidential campaign, helping to dispel his "wimpy" image
by coining such eloquent phrases as "a thousand points
of light" and "a kinder, gentler nation."

I got a real feel for the trials and tribulations of what it is
like working in the White House and would strongly recommend
this book to anybody wanting to learn more what such a
life entails.

Also, I think I'll always remember how Reagan wanted
his speeches to come across . . . he wanted them
to ALWAYS emphasize positive words, so rather
than say, "I'll never forget," he used, "I'll always
remember" . . . it might sound like a small thing;
however, the result was often quite the opposite.

4-0 out of 5 stars A Look "Behind the Curtain"
"Specificity is the soul of credibility," Noonan tells us and goes on to earn her credibility through the detailed descriptions presented in this masterful slice of American history. The quote actually refers to the editing of a canned stump speech edited slighted for various locations so that local politicians and locations distinguish one place from another on the tour.

Noonan allows readers to capture the flavor of the internal fighting among the powers that be in a presidential administration. Nearly everyone can identify with the "experts" being totally wrong in their advice. She discusses several incidences where she was second-guessed by people trying to "help her" improve her speeches and shows how the ones that were unedited were the best received. Virtually anyone in communication can identify with that sort of experience at some level.

There's an element of mystery included. She talks about Reagan giving her a joke, mentioning that someday she could use it when she did other things. When he hung up the phone she says, "he knows something I don't know. He knows I'm going to write about these days." She did and the result tells a lot about human nature, politics, and dysfunctional systems. In spite of the dysfunctions, worthwhile accomplishments were made.

1-0 out of 5 stars Peggy saw a lot
Peggy helped see the revolution through. What she didn't tell us it was a revolution of the rich versus the poor and middle class. Peggy and Ronnie should feel great in the fact that "the revolution" makes it so we either don't have health care or have terrible health care, but still have to pay high premiums for service which should be available to everyone. That "the revolution" put many people out on the street and "the revolution" led to uncalled numerous deaths worldwide to benefit the wealthy. May they rot in hell!

4-0 out of 5 stars Candide on the NY-DC shuttle.
Peggy Noonan's political coming-of-age memoir is a delight for anyone, liberal or conservative. Noonan, a resolutely middle-class product of Long Island, New Jersey and Fairleigh Dickinson University, wrote first for Dan Rather, the CBS anchor, and then Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush.

She offers a wonderful recounting of her flirtation with and eventual repulsion from the American left, most vividly in her description of a bus trip to a Washington antiwar protest. It's a dim echo, really, of the intellectual journey taken by her political hero, Reagan.

Her recollection of the Reagan speechwriting shop is as compelling as any scene from Toby Ziegler's office in TV's "The West Wing." It rings true and its very exciting reading, even to this day. Also, her practical advice on political speechwriting is useful and valid whether you are a Democrat or Republican.

Working in that speechwriting shop, Noonan gave Reagan some of his most successful emotional appeals: The D-Day anniversary paean to "The Boys of Pointe du Hoc," the tribute to the Challenger astronauts. She followed that up with one of the most effective political attacks in US political history, George H.W. Bush's evisceration of his 1988 opponent, Michael Dukakis, at the New Orleans GOP convention.

I dock the book one star because of Noonan's lack of objectivity regarding Reagan, whom she loves like a kindly, if remote, grandfather. However, "What I Saw ..." is very much her best work. Her later books are either polemics or treacly valentines. Too bad, because she's such a wonderful memoirist. ... Read more


99. WHEN PRIDE STILL MATTERED : A Life of Vince Lombardi
by David Maraniss
list price: $26.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0684844184
Catlog: Book (1999-10-07)
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Sales Rank: 132396
Average Customer Review: 4.79 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

As coach of the Green Bay Packers from 1959 to 1967, Vince Lombardi turned perennial losers into a juggernaut, winning back-to-back NFL titles in 1961 and 1962, and Superbowls I and II in 1966 and 1967. Stern, severe, sentimental, and paternal, he stood revered, reviled, respected, and mocked--a touchstone for the '60s all in one person. Which adds up to the myth we've been left with. But who was the man? That's the question Pulitzer Prize-winner David Maraniss tackles. It begins with Lombardi's looming father, a man as colorful as his son would be conservative. Still, from his father Vince Lombardi learned a sense of presence and authority that could impress itself with just a look. If a moment can sum up and embrace a man's life--and capture the breadth of Maraniss's thoroughness--it is one that takes place off the field when the Packers organization decides to redecorate their offices in advance of the new head coach's arrival: "During an earlier visit," Maraniss reports, "he had examined the quarters--peeling walls, creaky floor, old leather chairs with holes in them, discarded newspapers and magazines piled on chairs and in the corners--and pronounced the setting unworthy of a National Football League club. 'This is a disgrace!' he had remarked." In one moment, one comment, Lombardi announced his intentions, made his vision and professionalism clear, and began to shake up a stale organization. It reveals far more about the man than wins and losses, and is the kind of moment Maraniss uses again and again in this superb resurrection of a figure who so symbolized a sporting era and sensibility. --Jeff Silverman ... Read more

Reviews (121)

5-0 out of 5 stars Possibly the greatest sports biography ever written
If you are thinking about passing on this book because you've read a hundred other things on Lombardi, don't.

I almost did. Amongst other things, I'm a football junkie, a bit of an amateur historian on the subject, and felt that I knew enough about Vince--regardless of how fascinating a subject he is. I bought the book on the basis of its good reviews, and let me tell you every other book I have about Vince has been replaced by this book.

It is probably the best sports biography ever written. First off Maraniss is a world class writer, and this isn't written at the Junior High level as many sports books are. Second, the quality of his research--the dates, details, quotes and interviews--is staggering. An objective look at Lombardi as a family man, a father gives us a real taste of his life. It puts the times and Vince's achievements into perspective, and I never once felt that the airing of what technically could be considered "dirty laundry"(although it is tame by 1990s standards) lessened Lombardi in my eyes. On the contrary, it made him more of a realistic, vunerable person who's life becomes all the more remarkable for it.

5-0 out of 5 stars The best sports book I've ever read!
I've always admired Vince Lombardi ever since his name was instilled in my conscious. When you think of the greatest coaches of all time, of any era, of any sport, Lombardi comes to mind. No coach ever gave so much of his blood, heart and dedication to win than Vince Lombardi; and all those traits are exhibited in this great biography of a man who transformed football, who brought football to the forefront. Maraniss has written a heartwarming, accurate account of a man who still lives in the public's conscious after his death almost 30 years ago. If you want a book about pure sports and strategy, then this isn't exactly your book. It's also about family and the desire to win. It's about determination. I've read King of the World by David Reminick which was also an excellent book, but this book tops it. When you finish this book you'll appreciate who Lombardi is and the sacrafice he gave to win. Most men wouldn't dare sacrafice so much of their time to do what Lombardi did, but after you finish this book you appreciate his love and why he did it. If there is one sports book you are ever going to get, this is it.

4-0 out of 5 stars Interesting
As a long-time Packer fan, about anything substantative would have been an interesting and fun read. But this one surprised me because it eclipsed long-established accounts of the Packers successes and failures and took an especially thorough look at the man who made Green Bay famous.

Who would have known, for example, that the Coach's brother was gay. Or that he could relate one-to-one to his team and his players in a way he never could to his family. The book shares more of these insights than it does such strategic things as how Jerry Kramer and Ken Bowman combined to throw "the" block. In fact, the on the field tactics and discussions almost become a distraction in a broader book that emphasizes what made the man tick.

Like Wisconsin's other 1960s era sports hero, Al McGuire, everybody thinks they know everything about Coach Lombardi. This book lends an exciting perspective on a man dead now for almost 35 years. It's fascinating and long overdue.

5-0 out of 5 stars fantastic!
First, a few low points... While not written in the jargon of the field, Maraniss clearly approaches the subject of Vince Lombardi from a post-modern point of view. He opens with a contrived and somewhat galling introduction, in which he explains that he has borrowed the title from another author and uses it (of course!) "ironically." At various points throughout the book, Maraniss attempts to "de-construct" Lombardi, which is to some extent the mark of any good biography, but the author takes it too far at times, especially in his frequent references to the "fallacy of the innocent past." Moreover, this is not a political book, but because Lombardi was mildly politically active, politics enters the picture. And a subtle bias pervades Maraniss's discussion of politics. When lifelong Democrat (but always pretty conservative) Lombardi begins drifting toward Nixon and Republicans in the turbulent sixties, Maraniss attributes Lombardi's conservatism not to a heartfelt belief in those principles but to an inability to cope with rapidly changing times. The 60s is a favorite topic for Maraniss, as his latest book indicates, but his digressions into the protests, while tangentially important to Lombardi's story (particularly his philosophy of freedom), are overdone.

Nevertheless, despite those faults, I still give this book a five. Immediately after that disappointing introduction, Maraniss redeems himself with probably the most stunning first line I have read in any book of nonfiction (and perhaps in fiction, too): "Everything begins with the body of the father." It is a starting point for a discussion of Lombardi's immigrant father, but it brings together elements that appear throughout the book: family (especially Lombardi's relationship with his son); Catholicism; the physical violence of football. From his youthful desire to be a priest and his high school and college football career, Maraniss follows Lombardi to Fordham and beyond to his first coaching job at a small Catholic high school in New Jersey and to an assistant's job at West Point, under Red Blaik. It was then to the Giants, where he was an assistant with Tom Landry, and finally across the country to Green Bay, where the legend was born.

The book is not just a biography of Vince Lombardi; it is a look at American life and culture and at the history of professional football. It is amazingly written, and the descriptions of football games are wonderful--particularly the Ice Bowl, which another reviewer has mentioned. Flaws and all, this is a fantastic read.

5-0 out of 5 stars Power Sweep
_That William Verneli Wood was challengig for a place on the Packers at all was a meaure of his mental strength and perseverance. It also underscored the determination of Lombardi and his personnel man, Jack Vainisi, to ignore the prejudices then prevalent in most NFL front offices in their search for the most talented players...Wood was a black quarterback in an era when black athletes were seldom allowed the opportunity to play that position_ (p237). Willie Wood went on to play 12 seasons for the NFL Green Bay Packers and was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1989 In this biography WHEN PRIDE STILL MATTERED, David Maraniss identifies _race relations_ as an issue that revealed Coach Vincent Lombardi's character.

I understood very little about the American version of football. Part of my confusion was that the foot is seldom used, and the object of the competition resembles a ball like no other. Even so, after reading WPSM, Mr Maraniss has provided me an appreciation for the athletes and the unmatched accomplishments of Coach Lombardi. Mr Maraniss chronicles football's mythical beginnings at US colleges in the first half of the twentieth century culminating in its zenith in the decade of the 1960s. The Packers were the team of that turbulent decade and Coach Lombardi became an icon.

I was not surprised by this aspect of the biography. I don't feel I am alone in anticipating a captivating telling of the history and personalities of the NFL. Where Mr Maraniss exceeds my expectations is in his ability to weave disparate details together as they powerfully manifest at a critical time. The Packer Sweep is the most prominent example. So too is the complex and often contradictory character of Coach Lombardi.

Mr Maraniss tells us that Vincent Lombardi had a rare quality of leadership that enhances the confidence of those around him. He was able to lift their spirits and they in turn responded with an effort that exceeded even what they themselves thought possible. This is a spiritual gift.

Part of this gift found expression when Coach Lombardi was intolerant of racial prejudice. _The Jim Crow discrimination that black Packers faced when the team played exhibition games in the South enraged Lombardi, and at the end of the 1960 preseason he decided that he would never again allow his team to be split by segregation; from then on, he said, any hotel that would not accomodate all Packers would get no Packers_ He applied the same standard to the establishments in hometown Green Bay, Wisconson.

Even before Willie Wood came to Green Bay, Lombardi brought Em Tunnell with him from the NY Giants, and paid for his lodgings, _Lombardi respected and needed Tunnell's experience that much_. (p240). Tunnell and Wood returned the respect. Wood said that Lombardi was _perhaps the fairest person I ever met_

Coach Lombardi carried this same attitude to the issues of homosexuality and pre-marital pregnancy. These are typically, emotionally laden issues for Christians. Whatever reservations Lombardi may have held personally, he let his team know that a gay player deserved respect, _if I hear one of you people make reference to his manhood you'll be out of here before your ass hits the ground_ (p471).

The coach's daughter and her fiance agreed to get married but they did not want her parents to know that she was pregnant. Their parish priest helped the young couple with the details of securing a marriage license and with their permission, contacted Vince and Marie Lombardi who were enjoying the success of a Super Bowl victory in Florida (GB 33 Oakland 14). Lombardi had become a national symbol of old-fashioned discipline and moral rectitude. Upon hearing the news, _at first, Lombardi was 'extremely angry, of course, but then calmed down and began drafting a game plan._ (p430). As soon as Vince and Marie returned to Green Bay, they paid a visit to the newlyweds. Susan remembers, _He stuck out his hand to Paul and said welcome to the family and asked him about his education and his plans_.

Mr Maraniss tells us of a complex Coach in this biography of Vincent Lombardi. There is never any doubt about his shortcomings. Through his unique determination Lombardi overcame these shortcomings and applied his will to hold a faith in the positive nature of us all. _Winning is the ony thing_ is the most famous quotation from Coach Lombardi, but winning was not the only thing at which Vincent Lombardi excelled.

PEACE ... Read more


100. No Such Thing as Over-Exposure : Inside the Life and Celebrity of Donald Trump
by Robert Slater
list price: $24.95
our price: $24.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0131497340
Catlog: Book (2005-03-14)
Publisher: Financial Times Prentice Hall
Sales Rank: 440596
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