Michael Beschloss' dramatic and inspiring saga explores crucial times when courageous presidents changed the history of the United States. With surprising new sources and a dazzling command of history and human character, Beschloss brings these flawed, complex men and their wives, families, friends, and foes to life as if in a gripping novel. Never have we had a more intimate, behind-the-scenes view of presidents coping with the supreme dilemmas of their lives. In Presidential Courage you will witness George Washington braving threats of impeachment and assassination to make peace with England; John Adams, incurring his party's "unrelenting hatred" by refusing to fight France and warning, "Great is the guilt of an unnecessary war"; Andrew Jackson, in a death struggle against the corrupt Bank of the United States; Abraham Lincoln, risking his presidency to insist that slaves be freed; and the crushing ordeals faced by Theodore and Franklin Roosevelt, Harry Truman, John F. Kennedy, and Ronald Reagan. As Beschloss shows, none of these presidents was eager to incur ridicule, vilification, or threats of political destruction and even assassination. But in the end, each ultimately proved himself to be, in Andrew Jackson's words, "born for the storm".More
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Incredibly Relevant to our times!
- LM in Alabama
Read book first then listened to book
Liked both print and audio of book.
Learning that elected officials can make hard decisions even when it's not politically wise.
His tone was easy to follow and he unfolded each story well.
Teddy Roosevelt's presidency was very interesting since he was a Republican with Democratic principles.
Since I was scheduled to lead a bookclub meeting on this book, I read the book first and then listened to the book. The actions taken by the presidents cited in the book provided great bookclub discussion. We also reviewed what other bold moves these same presidents made that were not included in the book and what other presidents during the same 200 years did that were not included. There were several general themes in the examples given in the book with the most obvious being that politics have not changed since Washington's time. Another theme that evolved was that many of the presidents did not necessarily initially support the actions they took but eventually saw that the country would benefit from the unpopular decision.