JBW , August 4, 2012 (view all comments by JBW )
An American story so grand and powerful you'll be renewed in your faith in the American system. This book entails the grand story of individual and collective motivation and possibilities that abound in every aspect we cherish most. Chernow weaves A. Hamilton's life in that of ultimate patriot, statesman, and intellectual founding father to much of Americas most powerful tools that we enormously benefit from to this day. Hamilton's life its examined in intimate detail and is never shorthanded in this ultimate biography of him. Chernow has made an everlasting impression on me through this biography by espousing, in meticulous detail, the intellectual genius and unwavering patriotism bounding at every moment of Hamilton's life. "Alexander Hamilton" is simply the finest biographical work done on Hamilton or likely any historical documentation of Revolutionary America.
JANKEOUGH, May 6, 2007 (view all comments by JANKEOUGH)
I've been reading many biographies of those involved in creating the US. Chernow's Alexander Hamilton is the best and certainly most compelling. Apart from the overall excellence of the presentation, I was astonished at Hamilton's drive, intellect and accomplishments. There should be a physical monument to this dedicated servant of the Revolutionary cause. And this is not igonoring his enormous and elitist ego and moral failings at all. I suppose this input is late considering the book has been out a few years but, truly, it is well-worth the time and page-turning to read!
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by Publishers Weekly,
"[A] biography commensurate with Hamilton's character, as well as the full, complex context of his unflaggingly active life....This is a fine work that captures Hamilton's life with judiciousness and verve."
by Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review),
"A splendid life of an enlightened reactionary and forgotten Founding Father. Literate and full of engaging historical asides. By far the best of the many lives of Hamilton now in print, and a model of the biographer's art."
by Joseph J. Ellis, author of Founding Brothers: The Revolutionary Generation,
"A robust full-length portrait, in my view the best ever written, of the most brilliant, charismatic and dangerous founder of them all."
by David McCullough, author of John Adams,
"This is grand-scale biography at its best — thorough, insightful, consistently fair, and superbly written....The whole life and times are here in a genuinely great book."
by David Brooks, The New York Times Book Review,
"[T]here is no Hamilton monument in Washington, but at least we now have Ron Chernow's moving and masterly Alexander Hamilton, which is by far the best biography ever written about the man."
by Janet Maslin, The New York Times,
"If Alexander Hamilton reflects its subject's far from charismatic nature, it also provides a serious, far-reaching measure of his place in history. And Mr. Chernow has done a splendid job..."
by Library Journal,
"A first-rate life and excellent addition to the ongoing debate about Hamilton's importance in the shaping of America."
by Wall Street Journal,
"Impressively thorough, superbly written and carefully researched biography."
From National Book Award winner Ron Chernow comes a landmark biography of Alexander Hamilton, the Founding Father who galvanized, inspired, scandalized, and shaped the newborn nation.
In the first full-length biography of Alexander Hamilton in decades, National Book Award winner Ron Chernow tells the riveting story of a man who overcame all odds to shape, inspire, and scandalize the newborn America. According to historian Joseph Ellis, Alexander Hamilton is andldquo;a robust full-length portrait, in my view the best ever written, of the most brilliant, charismatic and dangerous founder of them all.andrdquo;
Few figures in American history have been more hotly debated or more grossly misunderstood than Alexander Hamilton. Chernowandrsquo;s biography gives Hamilton his due and sets the record straight, deftly illustrating that the political and economic greatness of todayandrsquo;s America is the result of Hamiltonandrsquo;s countless sacrifices to champion ideas that were often wildly disputed during his time. andldquo;To repudiate his legacy,andrdquo; Chernow writes, andldquo;is, in many ways, to repudiate the modern world.andrdquo; Chernow here recounts Hamiltonandrsquo;s turbulent life: an illegitimate, largely self-taught orphan from the Caribbean, he came out of nowhere to take America by storm, rising to become George Washingtonandrsquo;s aide-de-camp in the Continental Army, coauthoring The Federalist Papers, founding the Bank of New York, leading the Federalist Party, and becoming the first Treasury Secretary of the United States.
Historians have long told the story of Americaandrsquo;s birth as the triumph of Jeffersonandrsquo;s democratic ideals over the aristocratic intentions of Hamilton. Chernow presents an entirely different man, whose legendary ambitions were motivated not merely by self-interest but by passionate patriotism and a stubborn will to build the foundations of American prosperity and power. His is a Hamilton far more human than weandrsquo;ve encountered beforeandmdash;from his shame about his birth to his fiery aspirations, from his intimate relationships with childhood friends to his titanic feuds with Jefferson, Madison, Adams, Monroe, and Burr, and from his highly public affair with Maria Reynolds to his loving marriage to his loyal wife Eliza. And never before has there been a more vivid account of Hamiltonandrsquo;s famous and mysterious death in a duel with Aaron Burr in July of 1804.
Chernowandrsquo;s biography is not just a portrait of Hamilton, but the story of Americaandrsquo;s birth seen through its most central figure. At a critical time to look back to our roots, Alexander Hamilton will remind readers of the purpose of our institutions and our heritage as Americans.
Ron Chernow, the renowned author of Titan whom the New York Times has called“as elegant an architect of monumental histories as w‛ve seen in decades” vividly re-creates the whole sweep of Alexander Hamilto‛s turbulent life¬—his exotic, brutal upbringing; his titanic feuds with celebrated rivals; his pivotal role in defining the shape of the federal government and the American economy; his shocking illicit romances; his enlightened abolitionism; and his famous death in a duel with Aaron Burr in July 1804. Drawing upon extensive, unparalleled research¬— including nearly fifty previously undiscovered essays highlighting Hamilto‛s fiery journalism as well as his revealing missives to colleagues and friends¬—this biography of the extraordinarily gifted founding father who galvanized, inspired, and scandalized the newborn nation is the work by which all others will be measured.
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