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I must admit that before listening to this book I knew very little about Andrew Mellon. With the exception of Mellon Bank, Carnegie Mellon University and his service as US Secretary of the Treasury under 3 presidents, Andrew Mellon to me was a distant figure who ranked with the other plutocrats of the guilded age (Morgan, Frick, Rockefeller and Carnegie). This book was truly a revelation. It is a long listen but the narrator does an excellent job and the coverage of Mellon's life and ancestory is truly complete. I must admit that I found the latter part of the book (during which the author discusses Mellon's time in Washington while he served as Treasury Secretary (and for what it is worth, he not Ronald Reagan was the creater of Trickle Down Economics), his income tax trial, his fight with New Dealers and his work as founder of the National Gallery) to more interesting than the first part of the book where the author discusses his business career. Nevertheless I found this book to be extremely enlightening and worth listening to despite its being very long in length.
15 of 15 people found this review helpful
A very detailed history of the Mellon family (lots of time spent on the father), but more importantly, this is a description of the rise of American-style capitalism. David Cannadine is a historian with obviously great research skills. This audio book tops 36 hours and I found every minute of it to be interesting. I'm so sick of journalist writing shallow books on topics they only have a passing interest in (and zero research ability beyond talking to someone who just so happens to want to sell something). Prof. Cannadine says the book was more than ten years in the making--I just wish we had more quality business history like this.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful