thetaf, August 4, 2012 (view all comments by thetaf)
I enjoyed this well-written book. It was not a hagiography, nor was it anti-
Franklin. It came across to me as well-rounded and an attempt at an honest
interpretation of Franklin. There is much to like about Ben - he's approachable,
a regular guy, he's brilliant, and he has a sense of humor. He keeps one eye
on his business, but cares about others. It didn't look like it would be an
advantage to be a member of his immediate family - that was not where his
priority was. Isaacson writes pretty well and he tries to sum things up - where
is Frankin's place in history? How important was he to the American revolution?
yooooooooooooog, January 2, 2012 (view all comments by yooooooooooooog)
At his time, one of the most revered, respected, and entertaining people to span history, his name will forever be remembered. Learn the truth of what you think you know of him, as well as the dirty details of how this man single-handedly shaped the United States revolution. All Americans should thank him every day for his accomplishments in the many fields he invested his life to.
lmvk, February 24, 2008 (view all comments by lmvk)
A very well written biography about Franklin. The author portrayed Franklin's complex personality without applying his own bias, rather he lets the letters and stories about Franklin paint the picture for him. Very well researched and delivered.
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Simon & Schuster -
by Library Journal,
"[A]n admirable work that takes its place among recently acclaimed biographies by H.W. Brands and Edmund Morgan as one with special appeal to a general audience."
by Kirkus Reviews,
"[Franklin] remains an ideal American type — and one well served by this sympathetic and admiring study....a solid contribution to Frankliniana."
by Publishers Weekly,
"Isaacson...has a keen eye for the genius of a man whose fingerprints lie everywhere in our history. The oldest, most distinctive and multifaceted of the founders, Franklin remains as mysterious as Jefferson."
by John Ferling, The Washington Post,
"Isaacson has crafted a wonderfully written biography, and his treatment of Franklin's youth and rise to prominence is insightful and imaginative."
by Joseph J. Ellis, The New York Times,
"It is a thoroughly researched, crisply written, convincingly argued chronicle that is also studded with little nuggets of fresh information."
This portrait of Benjamin Frankin's public and private life also examines American and European political history of the time. The author examines the run up to the Revolutionary War, the relations between Britain, France and the colonies and the events that led to America's independence.
In this authoritative and engrossing full-scale biography, Walter Isaacson, bestselling author of andlt;I andgt;Einstein andlt;/Iandgt;and andlt;I andgt;Steve Jobsandlt;/Iandgt;, shows how the most fascinating of America's founders helped define our national character.andlt;brandgt;andlt;brandgt;Benjamin Franklin is the founding father who winks at us, the one who seems made of flesh rather than marble. In a sweeping narrative that follows Franklinand#8217;s life from Boston to Philadelphia to London and Paris and back, Walter Isaacson chronicles the adventures of the runaway apprentice who became, over the course of his eighty-four-year life, Americaand#8217;s best writer, inventor, media baron, scientist, diplomat, and business strategist, as well as one of its most practical and ingenious political leaders. He explores the wit behind andlt;Iandgt;Poor Richardand#8217;s Almanacandlt;/Iandgt; and the wisdom behind the Declaration of Independence, the new nationand#8217;s alliance with France, the treaty that ended the Revolution, and the compromises that created a near-perfect Constitution.andlt;BRandgt; andlt;BRandgt;In this colorful and intimate narrative, Isaacson provides the full sweep of Franklinand#8217;s amazing life, showing how he helped to forge the American national identity and why he has a particular resonance in the twenty-first century.
Rescuing Benjamin Franklin from the clich of genial codger, this book celebrates the most interesting, advanced, and earthy of the founding fathers. 16-page four-color insert.
Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at Powells.com.