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5 Local Warehouse US History- Washington, George

Washington: A Life

by

Washington: A Life Cover

ISBN13: 9781594202667
ISBN10: 1594202664
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Less Than Standard
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Awards

Staff Pick

Ron Chernow's gripping biography covers George Washington's many facets, some previously unexplored and all penned with the author's literary acuteness. By delving into the personal, as well as the political, Chernow successfully paints an unprecedented and psychologically incisive portrait of our nation's first president.
Recommended by Josephine, Powells.com

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

From National Book Award winner Ron Chernow, a landmark biography of George Washington.

In Washington: A Life celebrated biographer Ron Chernow provides a richly nuanced portrait of the father of our nation. With a breadth and depth matched by no other one-volume life of Washington, this crisply paced narrative carries the reader through his troubled boyhood, his precocious feats in the French and Indian War, his creation of Mount Vernon, his heroic exploits with the Continental Army, his presiding over the Constitutional Convention, and his magnificent performance as America's first president.

Despite the reverence his name inspires, Washington remains a lifeless waxwork for many Americans, worthy but dull. A laconic man of granite self-control, he often arouses more respect than affection. In this groundbreaking work, based on massive research, Chernow dashes forever the stereotype of a stolid, unemotional man. A strapping six feet, Washington was a celebrated horseman, elegant dancer, and tireless hunter, with a fiercely guarded emotional life. Chernow brings to vivid life a dashing, passionate man of fiery opinions and many moods. Probing his private life, he explores his fraught relationship with his crusty mother, his youthful infatuation with the married Sally Fairfax, and his often conflicted feelings toward his adopted children and grandchildren. He also provides a lavishly detailed portrait of his marriage to Martha and his complex behavior as a slave master.

At the same time, Washington is an astute and surprising portrait of a canny political genius who knew how to inspire people. Not only did Washington gather around himself the foremost figures of the age, including James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, John Adams, and Thomas Jefferson, but he also brilliantly orchestrated their actions to shape the new federal government, define the separation of powers, and establish the office of the presidency.

In this unique biography, Ron Chernow takes us on a page-turning journey through all the formative events of America's founding. With a dramatic sweep worthy of its giant subject, Washington is a magisterial work from one of our most elegant storytellers.

Review:

"In his introduction, veteran biographer Chernow is clear about his goals. Using the recent 'explosion of research,' he wants to render George Washington 'real' and 'credible,' to replace 'frosty respect' with 'visceral appreciation.' In many respects, Chernow succeeds. He gives us a Washington who starts with limited education and means and, through a remarkable combination of timely deaths, an incredible capacity for hard work, a shrewd marriage, astonishing physical hardiness and courage, a propensity for land speculation, and a gift for finding influential patrons, transforms himself into a soldier, well-to-do planter, local official, and eventually the only real choice to command the Continental army, preside over the Constitutional Convention, and serve as the first president. Chernow makes familiar scenes fresh (like the crossing of the Delaware) and expertly brings the provisional revolutionary and early Republican eras to life. Along the way, however, he mistakes 'visceral' for ardent; while he never hides Washington's less than saintly moments or shirks the vexed question of slavery, he often seems to ignore the data he's collected. Examples of shady dealing are quickly followed by tales of Washington's unimpeachable ethics or impeccable political savvy. At times it feels as if Chernow, for all his careful research and talent for synthesis, is in the grip of a full-scale crush. The result is a good book that would have been great if better edited, and if Chernow had trusted that Washington's many merits, even when accompanied by his faults, would speak for themselves.
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved." Publishers Weekly (Copyright PWyxz LLC)

Review:

"Tenaciously researched...This new portrait offers a fresh sense of what a groundbreaking role Washington played, not only in physically embodying his new nation's leadership but also in interpreting how its newly articulated constitutional principles would be applied...deeply rewarding." New York Times

Review:

"Just as he resuscitated Alexander Hamilton in a heralded 2004 biography, Ron Chernow now resurrects Washington...[A] remarkable book." Entertainment Weekly

Review:

"Today, books about Washington continue to appear at such an astonishing rate that the publication of Ron Chernow's prompts the inevitable question: Why another one? An obvious answer is that Chernow is no ordinary writer. Like his popular biographies of John D. Rockefeller and Alexander Hamilton, his Washington...is vivid and well paced." New York Times Book Review

Review:

"Whether he's debunking the legend of Washington's wooden teeth (ivory that cracked and discolored over time) or the purely fictional tale of the cherry tree, the massive yet briskly paced Washington: A Life is a rollicking read, sure to redefine perceptions and correct assumptions." Kirkus Reviews

Synopsis:

From National Book Award-winner Chernow comes a landmark biography of George Washington - -a richly nuanced portrait of the father of the nation featuring a breadth and depth unmatched by any other narrative.

Synopsis:

The definitive biography of the great soldier-statesman by the New York Times bestselling author of The Storm of War

Austerlitz, Borodino, Waterloo: his battles are among the greatest in history, but Napoleon Bonaparte was far more than a military genius and astute leader of men. Like George Washington and his own hero Julius Caesar, he was one of the greatest soldier-statesmen of all times.

Andrew Robertsand#8217;s Napoleon is the first one-volume biography to take advantage of the recent publication of Napoleonand#8217;s thirty-three thousand letters, which radically transform our understanding of his character and motivation. At last we see him as he was: protean multitasker, decisive, surprisingly willing to forgive his enemies and his errant wife Josephine. Like Churchill, he understood the strategic importance of telling his own story, and his memoirs, dictated from exile on St. Helena, became the single bestselling book of the nineteenth century.

An award-winning historian, Roberts traveled to fifty-three of Napoleonand#8217;s sixty battle sites, discovered crucial new documents in archives, and even made the long trip by boat to St. Helena. He is as acute in his understanding of politics as he is of military history. Here at last is a biography worthy of its subject: magisterial, insightful, beautifully written, by one of our foremost historians.

Synopsis:

Watch a Video
  • Watch a video

Read "Surprising Facts About George Washington" from Washington: A Life by Ron Chernow From Pulitzer-prize winner Ron Chernow, a landmark biography of George Washington.

In Washington: A Life celebrated biographer Ron Chernow provides a richly nuanced portrait of the father of our nation. With a breadth and depth matched by no other one-volume life of Washington, this crisply paced narrative carries the reader through his troubled boyhood, his precocious feats in the French and Indian War, his creation of Mount Vernon, his heroic exploits with the Continental Army, his presiding over the Constitutional Convention, and his magnificent performance as America's first president.

Despite the reverence his name inspires, Washington remains a lifeless waxwork for many Americans, worthy but dull. A laconic man of granite self-control, he often arouses more respect than affection. In this groundbreaking work, based on massive research, Chernow dashes forever the stereotype of a stolid, unemotional man. A strapping six feet, Washington was a celebrated horseman, elegant dancer, and tireless hunter, with a fiercely guarded emotional life. Chernow brings to vivid life a dashing, passionate man of fiery opinions and many moods. Probing his private life, he explores his fraught relationship with his crusty mother, his youthful infatuation with the married Sally Fairfax, and his often conflicted feelings toward his adopted children and grandchildren. He also provides a lavishly detailed portrait of his marriage to Martha and his complex behavior as a slave master.

At the same time, Washington is an astute and surprising portrait of a canny political genius who knew how to inspire people. Not only did Washington gather around himself the foremost figures of the age, including James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, John Adams, and Thomas Jefferson, but he also brilliantly orchestrated their actions to shape the new federal government, define the separation of powers, and establish the office of the presidency.

In this unique biography, Ron Chernow takes us on a page-turning journey through all the formative events of America's founding. With a dramatic sweep worthy of its giant subject, Washington is a magisterial work from one of our most elegant storytellers.

About the Author

Ron Chernow is the Pulitzer prize-winning author of five previous books. His first, The House of Morgan, won the National Book Award. His two most recent books, Alexander Hamilton and Titan: The Life of John D. Rockefeller, Sr., were both nominated for the National Book Critics Circle Award in biography.  Washington: A Life received the 2011 Pulitzer Prize for Biography. Chernow lives in Brooklyn, New York.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 5 comments:

brentcav, January 1, 2011 (view all comments by brentcav)
Chernov did a great job of taking a look at why Washington was the man he was with an insightful look at his motivations, life experiences, and psychology. I thought it was interesting because it wasn't just another history telling the reader what Washington did, but aims to explain what made him tic. In otherwords is was somewhat of mix between a psychological profile and a history. It was an enjoyable and insightful read to anyone who enjoys early/colonial U.S. history.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
tjmartens, January 1, 2011 (view all comments by tjmartens)
Well written book about an incredible man.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
wilki017, January 1, 2011 (view all comments by wilki017)
A biography of man who has become emblamatic of the founding of our nation. This volume has not received the attention it deserves.
A perceptive and even-handed recounting of this most remarkable individual. It neither deifies nor reflects the now popular petty revisionist's vilification of meritorious personages. Scholarly in content,yet it reads like an historical novel. Although historical literature is replete with Washington biographies, this volume stands among the very few reaching the calibre of Douglas Southall
Freeman's biography. The author presents the extraordinary personality characteristics which made him unique for his time and ours as well. The author does not shy from the less admirable qualities, by current standards, to which he was prone. It should be required reading for all aspiring to leadership, governmental and otherwise.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
View all 5 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9781594202667
Author:
Chernow, Ron
Publisher:
Penguin Press
Author:
Brick, Scott
Author:
Herrmann, Edward
Author:
Roberts, Andrew
Subject:
Presidents & Heads of State
Subject:
United States - Revolutionary War
Subject:
Historical - U.S.
Subject:
Presidents
Subject:
Biography-Presidents and Heads of State
Subject:
Historical
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
20101031
Binding:
Paperback
Grade Level:
from 12
Language:
English
Illustrations:
2-16 pp 4/c insert; 22 maps
Pages:
592
Dimensions:
9.25 x 6.13 in 1 lb
Age Level:
17-17

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Related Subjects

Biography » Historical
Biography » Presidents and Heads of State
History and Social Science » US History » Presidents » Washington, George
History and Social Science » US History » Revolution and Constitution Era
History and Social Science » US History » US Presidency

Washington: A Life Used Hardcover
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Product details 592 pages Penguin Press - English 9781594202667 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

Ron Chernow's gripping biography covers George Washington's many facets, some previously unexplored and all penned with the author's literary acuteness. By delving into the personal, as well as the political, Chernow successfully paints an unprecedented and psychologically incisive portrait of our nation's first president.

"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "In his introduction, veteran biographer Chernow is clear about his goals. Using the recent 'explosion of research,' he wants to render George Washington 'real' and 'credible,' to replace 'frosty respect' with 'visceral appreciation.' In many respects, Chernow succeeds. He gives us a Washington who starts with limited education and means and, through a remarkable combination of timely deaths, an incredible capacity for hard work, a shrewd marriage, astonishing physical hardiness and courage, a propensity for land speculation, and a gift for finding influential patrons, transforms himself into a soldier, well-to-do planter, local official, and eventually the only real choice to command the Continental army, preside over the Constitutional Convention, and serve as the first president. Chernow makes familiar scenes fresh (like the crossing of the Delaware) and expertly brings the provisional revolutionary and early Republican eras to life. Along the way, however, he mistakes 'visceral' for ardent; while he never hides Washington's less than saintly moments or shirks the vexed question of slavery, he often seems to ignore the data he's collected. Examples of shady dealing are quickly followed by tales of Washington's unimpeachable ethics or impeccable political savvy. At times it feels as if Chernow, for all his careful research and talent for synthesis, is in the grip of a full-scale crush. The result is a good book that would have been great if better edited, and if Chernow had trusted that Washington's many merits, even when accompanied by his faults, would speak for themselves.
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved." Publishers Weekly (Copyright PWyxz LLC)
"Review" by , "Tenaciously researched...This new portrait offers a fresh sense of what a groundbreaking role Washington played, not only in physically embodying his new nation's leadership but also in interpreting how its newly articulated constitutional principles would be applied...deeply rewarding."
"Review" by , "Just as he resuscitated Alexander Hamilton in a heralded 2004 biography, Ron Chernow now resurrects Washington...[A] remarkable book."
"Review" by , "Today, books about Washington continue to appear at such an astonishing rate that the publication of Ron Chernow's prompts the inevitable question: Why another one? An obvious answer is that Chernow is no ordinary writer. Like his popular biographies of John D. Rockefeller and Alexander Hamilton, his Washington...is vivid and well paced."
"Review" by , "Whether he's debunking the legend of Washington's wooden teeth (ivory that cracked and discolored over time) or the purely fictional tale of the cherry tree, the massive yet briskly paced Washington: A Life is a rollicking read, sure to redefine perceptions and correct assumptions."
"Synopsis" by , From National Book Award-winner Chernow comes a landmark biography of George Washington - -a richly nuanced portrait of the father of the nation featuring a breadth and depth unmatched by any other narrative.
"Synopsis" by ,
The definitive biography of the great soldier-statesman by the New York Times bestselling author of The Storm of War

Austerlitz, Borodino, Waterloo: his battles are among the greatest in history, but Napoleon Bonaparte was far more than a military genius and astute leader of men. Like George Washington and his own hero Julius Caesar, he was one of the greatest soldier-statesmen of all times.

Andrew Robertsand#8217;s Napoleon is the first one-volume biography to take advantage of the recent publication of Napoleonand#8217;s thirty-three thousand letters, which radically transform our understanding of his character and motivation. At last we see him as he was: protean multitasker, decisive, surprisingly willing to forgive his enemies and his errant wife Josephine. Like Churchill, he understood the strategic importance of telling his own story, and his memoirs, dictated from exile on St. Helena, became the single bestselling book of the nineteenth century.

An award-winning historian, Roberts traveled to fifty-three of Napoleonand#8217;s sixty battle sites, discovered crucial new documents in archives, and even made the long trip by boat to St. Helena. He is as acute in his understanding of politics as he is of military history. Here at last is a biography worthy of its subject: magisterial, insightful, beautifully written, by one of our foremost historians.

"Synopsis" by ,
Watch a Video
  • Watch a video

Read "Surprising Facts About George Washington" from Washington: A Life by Ron Chernow From Pulitzer-prize winner Ron Chernow, a landmark biography of George Washington.

In Washington: A Life celebrated biographer Ron Chernow provides a richly nuanced portrait of the father of our nation. With a breadth and depth matched by no other one-volume life of Washington, this crisply paced narrative carries the reader through his troubled boyhood, his precocious feats in the French and Indian War, his creation of Mount Vernon, his heroic exploits with the Continental Army, his presiding over the Constitutional Convention, and his magnificent performance as America's first president.

Despite the reverence his name inspires, Washington remains a lifeless waxwork for many Americans, worthy but dull. A laconic man of granite self-control, he often arouses more respect than affection. In this groundbreaking work, based on massive research, Chernow dashes forever the stereotype of a stolid, unemotional man. A strapping six feet, Washington was a celebrated horseman, elegant dancer, and tireless hunter, with a fiercely guarded emotional life. Chernow brings to vivid life a dashing, passionate man of fiery opinions and many moods. Probing his private life, he explores his fraught relationship with his crusty mother, his youthful infatuation with the married Sally Fairfax, and his often conflicted feelings toward his adopted children and grandchildren. He also provides a lavishly detailed portrait of his marriage to Martha and his complex behavior as a slave master.

At the same time, Washington is an astute and surprising portrait of a canny political genius who knew how to inspire people. Not only did Washington gather around himself the foremost figures of the age, including James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, John Adams, and Thomas Jefferson, but he also brilliantly orchestrated their actions to shape the new federal government, define the separation of powers, and establish the office of the presidency.

In this unique biography, Ron Chernow takes us on a page-turning journey through all the formative events of America's founding. With a dramatic sweep worthy of its giant subject, Washington is a magisterial work from one of our most elegant storytellers.

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