A classic biography, "George Washington: A Life" tells the human story of one of our founding fathers. "Randall's demythologized Washington comes ...Show synopsisA classic biography, "George Washington: A Life" tells the human story of one of our founding fathers. "Randall's demythologized Washington comes vividly to life".--"Publishers Weekly" (starred).Hide synopsis
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First, the good parts: I enjoyed this book. As a moderate-sized (500 page) single volume biography of our first president, one can certainly do worse. There was quite a bit more on Washington's pre-Revolutionary life than I expected, which was welcome since I didn't know as much about that part of his life. I also learned a plausible reason as to why Washington was picked to head the Continental Army given his disastrous record in the French and Indian War (as the American part of the Seven Years War was called) - they needed someone from Virginia to lessen the domination of the Revolution by New England.
Now the negatives: a reader not already familiar with the context of the larger events may be lost; for example, there's very little about the Seven Years War beyond Washington's personal involvement. The chapters on Washington's presidency are skimpy. And there are numerous needless repetitions and small errors, which makes one less confident in the overall quality of the product that one would like. Still, as a single volume biography of one of the most imporant Americans, one could do worse.
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