Cronkite

Cronkite

3.9 16
by Douglas Brinkley
     
 

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Douglas Brinkley presents the definitive, revealing biography of an American legend: renowned news anchor Walter Cronkite.

An acclaimed author and historian, Brinkley has drawn upon recently disclosed letters, diaries, and other artifacts at the recently opened Cronkite Archive to bring detail and depth to this deeply personal portrait.

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Overview

Douglas Brinkley presents the definitive, revealing biography of an American legend: renowned news anchor Walter Cronkite.

An acclaimed author and historian, Brinkley has drawn upon recently disclosed letters, diaries, and other artifacts at the recently opened Cronkite Archive to bring detail and depth to this deeply personal portrait.

He also interviewed nearly two hundred of Cronkite’s closest friends and colleagues, including Andy Rooney, Leslie Stahl, Barbara Walters, Dan Rather, Brian Williams, Les Moonves, Christiane Amanpour, Katie Couric, Bob Schieffer, Ted Turner, Jimmy Buffett, and Morley Safer, using their voices to instill dignity and humanity in this study of one of America’s most beloved and trusted public figures.

Editorial Reviews

Walter Isaacson
“Walter Cronkite exemplified the glorious age of trusted journalism. In this deeply researched and brilliantly analytic biography, Douglas Brinkley captures his essence. He treats Cronkite as not just an icon, but as a real human with passions, loves, and occasional enmities. It’s a fascinating and valuable tale.”
Michael Beschloss
“Douglas Brinkley’s absorbing and well-researched book recaptures the high solstice of American television journalism and the man who most exemplified that moment. It also illuminates, behind the scenes, a Walter Cronkite that millions of Americans thought they knew, but, as Brinkley’s book now shows us, didn’t.”
Ronald Steel
“In this absorbing and sensitively-written biography, Douglas Brinkley has captured not only the life and momentous decades of a uniquely American legend, but also the heartbeat of a nation in its times of both triumph and tragedy.”
Doris Kearns Goodwin
“This sweeping narrative of Walter Cronkite’s life is irresistibly told, beautifully written, and deeply researched. Douglas Brinkley has produced one trustworthy biography after another, each one commanding widespread respect and admiration. And this is one of the very best.”
Tom Brokaw
“The personal and professional life of Walter Cronkite is an American treasure - and we should all be grateful to Douglas Brinkley for telling it so well.”
Newsweek
“A sweeping and masterful biography.”
The San Francisco Chronicle
“With the style and precision worthy of his subject, Douglas Brinkley’s biography of the late Walter Cronkite gives the icon his due. . . . A keen, fair-minded book.”
The New York Times Book Review
“A majestic biography. . . . Cronkite is evidence that a job can be done just about perfectly. That goes for the man and this exceptional biography.”
The Boston Globe
“An ambitious and deeply researched biography. . . . Cronkite magically transports the reader to a bygone era. . . . Recounted here in detail, with scholarly grasp and smooth narrative flow, are the familiar milestones and more obscure regions of Cronkite’s life.”
Newsday
“Informed, wide-ranging, clear, accessible. . . . This richly detailed and impeccably researched biography brings you into a vivid life,. . . . A thorough, even-handed and illuminating work that goes beyond image and myth about the broadcast legend for a full, frank and fascinating portrait.”
Debby Applegate
“Exhaustively researched and beautifully written, Cronkite is a classic. Douglas Brinkley has written his best book yet. This is a fascinating story that will be read for years to come.”
Tina Brown
“A superb biography. . . . If only we had Walter Cronkite today.”
Janet Maslin
“Cronkite’s career has vast scope, and cumulative effect of this book is illuminating, not only about the man himself but also about the way he filtered history for a nation.”
Robert MacNeil
“A tremendous read. . . . Brinkley’s book brings this man intimately to light, in all his petty maneuvers and all his grandeur. I gobbled up every page.”
The Washington Post
For anyone interested in the evolution and power of broadcast news, this book is a tremendous read, minutely documenting TV journalism's most remarkable phenomenon, Walter Cronkite. As a junior competitor in the profession and later a casual friend of Cronkite's, I thought I understood the dimensions of his legend—until I read this book…What a piece of work! Brinkley's book brings this man intimately to light, in all his petty maneuvers and all his grandeur. I gobbled up every page.
—Robert MacNeil
Library Journal
We all think we know Walter Cronkite, "the most trusted man in America." But, having dug into the just opened Cronkite Archive at the University of Texas at Austin and interviewed over 200 people, from Morley Safer to Katie Couric, Brinkley should tell us much more. This one's big; with a one-day laydown on 5/29, a 250,000-copy first printing, and a seven-city tour.
Kirkus Reviews
Oversized biography of the larger-than-life newscaster, still a byword for a TV anchor, at least among viewers of a certain age. As Vanity Fair contributor Brinkley (History/Rice Univ.; The Wilderness Warrior: Theodore Roosevelt and the Crusade for America, 2009, etc.) writes, Walter Cronkite (1916–2009) was an indifferent student but a constant reader, attuned in childhood to what we would call the news, if at a different pace and intensity. It wasn't an easy childhood: Cronkite's father was an alcoholic, his parents divorced when he was young, and he grew up in the alien confines of coastal Texas, far from his prized Missouri. Nonetheless, he more than rose to the occasion, learning how to speak in a "radio voice" while still a teenager: "In true Lowell Thomas fashion, he interviewed anyone who would stand still and speak into whatever faux microphone prop he held." He also apprenticed at the Houston Post, learning how to write a lean news story, and he had a forward-looking habit, sensing that wire stories were going to be replaced by man-on-the-ground coverage and that television, when it arrived, would surpass radio and other media. Brinkley is very good on Cronkite's early distinction as a war correspondent in World War II under the influence of Edward R. Murrow. The author also gives Cronkite credit for being out ahead on certain stories, such as gay rights, the collapse of the Vietnam War and Watergate. He hints that Cronkite could be a touch prickly and sensitive--for one thing, about his lack of a college degree--but the author doesn't press that far enough; one wants to know more about the enmity between Cronkite and Dan Rather, for example. For all the book's weight, Brinkley, a dutiful and plodding writer, skimps here and there where he should not. The great correspondent and Cronkite-colleague Richard Threlkeld, for instance, gets but a single passing mention. Still, the best portrait of Cronkite--that legendary journalist, certainly worthy of a big biography--that we have.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780062002433
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
05/29/2012
Edition description:
Large Print
Pages:
1456
Sales rank:
415,663
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 2.50(d)

What People are saying about this

Ronald Steel

“In this absorbing and sensitively-written biography, Douglas Brinkley has captured not only the life and momentous decades of a uniquely American legend, but also the heartbeat of a nation in its times of both triumph and tragedy.”

Walter Isaacson

“Walter Cronkite exemplified the glorious age of trusted journalism. In this deeply researched and brilliantly analytic biography, Douglas Brinkley captures his essence. He treats Cronkite as not just an icon, but as a real human with passions, loves, and occasional enmities. It’s a fascinating and valuable tale.”

Michael Beschloss

“Douglas Brinkley’s absorbing and well-researched book recaptures the high solstice of American television journalism and the man who most exemplified that moment. It also illuminates, behind the scenes, a Walter Cronkite that millions of Americans thought they knew, but, as Brinkley’s book now shows us, didn’t.”

Doris Kearns Goodwin

“This sweeping narrative of Walter Cronkite’s life is irresistibly told, beautifully written, and deeply researched. Douglas Brinkley has produced one trustworthy biography after another, each one commanding widespread respect and admiration. And this is one of the very best.”

Debby Applegate

“Exhaustively researched and beautifully written, Cronkite is a classic. Douglas Brinkley has written his best book yet. This is a fascinating story that will be read for years to come.”

Tom Brokaw

“The personal and professional life of Walter Cronkite is an American treasure - and we should all be grateful to Douglas Brinkley for telling it so well.”

Read More

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