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Paul BlusteinThe result is an illuminating tour of how the United States has perceived its financial center over two centuries through the eyes of its political leaders, novelists, moviemakers, preachers, cartoonists, ordinary citizens and a host of others. This exercise "is both a probe into the American character and an inquiry into the way the character of America has changed," Fraser writes. In the process of telling this sprawling tale, he sometimes goes on too long, and his attempt to draw sweeping conclusions about America's changed character is strained. But his prose is elegant, and his eye for historical detail is keen, carrying the reader through the many sagas that he entertainingly recounts.
— The Washington Post