Every president has had some experience as a parent. Of the 43 men who have served in the nation's highest office, 38 have fathered biological children, and the other five adopted children. Each president's parenting style reveals much about his beliefs as well as his psychological makeup. James Garfield enjoyed jumping on the bed with his kids. FDR's children, on the other hand, had to make appointments to talk to him.
In a lively narrative based on research in archives around the country, Kendall shows presidential character in action. Listeners will learn which type of parent might be best suited to leading the American people and, finally, how the fathering experiences of our presidents have forever changed the course of American history.
"Here, for the first time is a fast-paced narrative concentrating on the presidents, their politics and their parenting. First Dads oftentimes is compelling in its accounts of the sometimes heroic and sometimes destructive behavior of the presidents and their families." (Irwin F. Gellman, author of The President and the Apprentice)
"Joshua Kendall's fascinating and magnificently researched First Dads fills a surprising gap in the study of presidential leadership. Kendall's lively anecdotes, his interviews with the children of presidents Lyndon Johnson and Jimmy Carter, among others, and his archival research into the lives of 19th Century presidents like John Tyler and Grover Cleveland make the case that studying how the presidents have interacted with their offspring gives us important insights into how they formulate policy." (Will Swift)
"Joshua Kendall's First Dads vividly brings the personal histories of the presidents to life from a new angle - their experiences as fathers. With meticulous research, he draws connections between presidential parenting styles and governing policies. First Dads is a fresh and engaging take." (Jay Winik, New York Times best-selling author)
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