Synopses & Reviews
An indispensable window on one of the most legendary figures in American politics and his tumultuous, controversial years in power, edited, set in context, and annotated by America's leading presidential historian.
Because Lyndon Johnson was the only president to tape-record phone conversations and private Oval Office meetings from the first hour of his presidency to the last, this is a look at a president in action that we have never had before, nor will again. The first volume of the Johnson White House tapes covers a monumental year in American history, starting with LBJ's accession to the White House after John Kennedy's murder. Because "the Johnson treatment" of friends and foes was so central to the 36th president's use of power, these tapes offer compelling insight into how Johnson governed -- struggling to surpass JFK on civil fights, guiding the nation into Vietnam, and campaigning for a landslide election in his own right. These conversations show LBJ applying his famous powers of persuasion to Robert Kennedy, Martin Luther King, Jr., J. Edgar Hoover, and many others.
Taking Charge gives us an intimate look at a pivotal American presidency -- in Johnson's words, history "with the bark off".