Nixon: The Education of a Politician 1913-1962

Nixon: The Education of a Politician 1913-1962

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by Stephen E. Ambrose

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This book is about one of the most complex and puzzling of our chief executives at the apogee of his career--rebounding from defeat to an innovative, high-risk presidency, already sowing the seeds of his ruin. Illustrated.


This book is about one of the most complex and puzzling of our chief executives at the apogee of his career--rebounding from defeat to an innovative, high-risk presidency, already sowing the seeds of his ruin. Illustrated.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
This auspicious opener in a projected two-volume life of Richard Nixon carries the California grocer's son from his school days to the vice-presidency and his subsequent failure to win the governorship of his home state. Ambrose, a professor of history at the University of New Orleans and biographer (Eisenhower, etc.) has written a readable, balanced biography of an unusually complex figure. From early on, he shows, the man who became ``the most successful vice-president'' of this century was an ambitious go-getter, also a cynical and nearly humorless loner whose inability to trust others (and heed their advice) cost him the 1960 presidential election. With emphasis, Ambrose attributes Nixon's unusual private reserve and public confidence to his Quaker heritage. The author is especially interesting whenhe charts how, as a young lawyer, Nixon created a national political base out of the Hiss case and the Korean War, then became for nearly three decades the most distrusted, even hated, politician in the U.S. because he ``seemed utterly insincere.'' Photos not seen by PW. BOMC and QPBC alternates. (April)
Library Journal
Ambrose, noted for his books on Eisenhower, reconsiders Nixon's career objectively in light of the passage of time and puts him into a useful historical context. Primarily, Ambrose examines Nixon's performance as a politician. No prior work has been based upon the amount of primary documentation cited here, and with the exception of Nixon's own writing ( Six Crises and The Memoirs of Richard Nixon ), there is no more thorough treatment of his pre-presidential years. There is altogether new material on Nixon's vice presidency and his relationship with Eisenhower. Until all relevant documents are available, this and a projected second volume should stand as the definitive political biography. BOMC and Quality Paperback Book Club alternates.. Susan E. Parker, Harvard Law Sch. Lib.

Product Details

Simon & Schuster
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
6.16(w) x 9.25(h) x 1.78(d)

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Nixon 3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
An excellently researched and fairly written account of someone who wanted to do what was right. I look forward to Volumes II and III.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
NestorER More than 1 year ago
Not to take anything away from the author or the content, unfortunately I received a copy from a reseller (no fault of his of course) with pages 401-432 MISSING. Not torn out mind you but absolutely missing. I don't know about anyone else but a book with missing pages is not worth reading. It can best be evaluated by going through the index and finding topics covered under the missing pages and then you can see what you won't be reading. Simply put I don't like books with missing pages. I may just try ordering another copy but unfortunately I only see a 1988 reprint which is my defective copy. Apart from that I recommend any reading by the late Stephen Ambrose. He himself thought Nixon such a great subject that his biography of Nixon had to be written in a trilogy. The subject itself is of 5-star quality
Guest More than 1 year ago
One of the first full-lenght books I read on Richard Nixon was Chris Matthews' "Kenndy and Nixon", which explained the relationship between these two late twentieth century dominating figures. It was interesting and inspired me to learn more about Nixon-not Kennedy whom you hear about almost every day. Ambrose's biography I would call farily honest and does congratulate and call Nioxn on his successes (I think i spelled that right) and failures. I'm now looking for the second volume but as is to my understanding it's out of print so who knows? Worth the time-if you're interested in a good true story.