The Roosevelts: An Intimate History [NOOK Book]

Overview

A vivid and personal portrait of America’s greatest political family and its enormous impact on our nation—the companion volume to the seven-part PBS documentary series
 
With 796 photographs, some never before seen
 
The authors of the acclaimed and best-selling The Civil War, Jazz, The War, and...
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The Roosevelts: An Intimate History

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Overview

A vivid and personal portrait of America’s greatest political family and its enormous impact on our nation—the companion volume to the seven-part PBS documentary series
 
With 796 photographs, some never before seen
 
The authors of the acclaimed and best-selling The Civil War, Jazz, The War, and Baseball present an intimate history of three extraordinary individuals from the same extraordinary family—Theodore, Eleanor, and Franklin Delano Roosevelt.
 
Geoffrey C. Ward, distilling more than thirty years of thinking and writing about the Roosevelts, and the acclaimed filmmaker Ken Burns help us understand for the first time that, despite the fierce partisanship of their eras, the Roosevelts were far more united than divided.

All the history the Roosevelts made is here, but this is primarily an intimate account, the story of three people who overcame obstacles that would have undone less forceful personalities.

Theodore Roosevelt would push past childhood frailty, outpace depression, survive terrible grief—and transform the office of the presidency.

Eleanor Roosevelt, orphaned and alone as a child, would endure her husband’s betrayal, battle her own self-doubts, and remake herself into the most consequential first lady in American history—and the most admired woman on earth.

And Franklin Roosevelt, born to privilege and so pampered that most of his youthful contemporaries dismissed him as a charming lightweight, would summon the strength to lead the nation through the two greatest crises since the Civil War, though he could not take a single step unaided.

The three were towering personalities, but The Roosevelts shows that they were also flawed human beings who confronted in their personal lives issues familiar to all of us: anger and the need for forgiveness, courage and cowardice, confidence and self-doubt, loyalty to family and the need to be true to oneself. This is the story of the Roosevelts—no other American family ever touched so many lives.


From the Hardcover edition.
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Editorial Reviews

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There will never been another Roosevelt book like this. This mammoth, large-format, lavishly illustrated history and biography focuses on modern America's most important dynasty, comprised of two presidents, Theodore Roosevelt (1858-1919) and his distant cousin Franklin Delano Roosevelt (1882-1945); and FDR's fifth cousin and wife Eleanor (1884-1962). Presiding over this august company are National Book Critics Award winner Geoffrey C. Ward (A First-Class Temperament: The Emergence of Franklin Delano Roosevelt) and premier documentarian Ken Burns. Not surprisingly, this handsome book with its 800 photographs serves as the official companion book of the PBS series that airs this fall.

Publishers Weekly
★ 06/23/2014
In this impressively thorough history, and companion piece to a forthcoming PBS series, historian/screenwriter Ward and producer/director Burns (Baseball: An Illustrated History) examine the lives and careers of one of America’s most memorable political dynasties, the Roosevelts, as represented by Theodore, Eleanor, and Franklin. Starting with Teddy’s asthma-plagued youth and ending with Eleanor’s death in 1962, every aspect of their lives and legacies is touched upon. Hundreds of photos, newspaper clippings, and accompanying captions flesh out the story, which expands to cover their friends and family, enemies, and (alleged) lovers. While none of the brief, chronological entries are incredibly deep, each offers a solid background to the relevant material, providing an engaging look at America during the first half of the 20th century. Part history, part biography, Ward and Burns strike the perfect balance between information and entertainment, keeping the tone casual yet authoritative. It would be a monumental task to cover any one of the three in full detail; this, then, is the perfect coffee table book treatment for such a trio. Agent: Carl Brandt, Brandt & Hochman Literary Agents. (Sept.)
From the Publisher
"Impressively thorough . . . Starting with Teddy’s asthma-plagued youth and ending with Eleanor’s death in 1962, every aspect of their lives and legacies is touched upon. Hundreds of photos, newspaper clippings, and accompanying captions flesh out the story, which expands to cover their friends and family, enemies, and (alleged) lovers. . . . Part history, part biography, Ward and Burns strike the perfect balance between information and entertainment, keeping the tone casual yet authoritative . . . the perfect coffee table book treatment."
—Publisher's Weekly (starred) 

“The very definition of ‘lavishly illustrated’ . . . a lucid text . . . superbly curated photographs . . . documenting such things as bracing hunts in the Rockies, anti-lynching demonstrations in Washington and boats full of teenage soldiers powering toward the beaches of Normandy . . . Excellent, as we have come to expect from the team of Ward and Burns—an eye-opening look at a political dynasty worthy of the name and at a state of politics far better than our own.”
Kirkus (starred)
 

Library Journal
07/01/2014
This companion to Burns's forthcoming documentary chronicles the lives of three of America's most influential people: Theodore Roosevelt (1858–1919), his distant cousin Franklin Delano (1882–1945), and Franklin's wife, Eleanor (1884–1962). The large (11" × 10") book is laden with images and divided into short one- to two-page sections, each relaying an anecdote or event. Its focus gravitates toward finding the common threads running throughout each of the subject's lives, particularly Theodore's influence on Franklin despite the small amount of time they actually spent together. On its own, this is a cross between an extremely well-researched biography and a coffee-table book with rare, incredible images. Its emphasis on revealing the connections among the three individuals and the incredible energy and strength that they shared is distinct and welcome, and the story is wonderfully told through intimate anecdotes that make the three political titans very human. This work does not possess the depth of the hefty individual biographies written about its subjects but explores a mostly unexamined dynamic with great care. VERDICT Recommended for those interested in presidential history, women's studies, and Burns's documentary work.—Benjamin Brudner, Curry Coll. Lib., Milton, MA
Kirkus Reviews
★ 2014-07-09
The very definition of “lavishly illustrated”—an oversized volume containing nearly 800 photographs documenting the lives of Theodore and Franklin Roosevelt and (to a much lesser extent) their wives and families.Prolific historian Ward (A Disposition to Be Rich: Ferdinand Ward, the Greatest Swindler of the Gilded Age, 2013, etc.) opens with the promising assertion that “the similarities and not the differences” between Teddy and FDR are the more interesting avenue of study. Those similarities are qualified but very real. Both bucked the reins of their parties, though the one remained a Republican for most of his political career (said Teddy, “The man is not everything; the party is most of all”), and the other redefined Democratic Party politics; both were children of privilege whose sense ofnoblesse obligeincluded a fundamental sense of fairness that seems not to characterize the 1 percent of today. Ward chronicles the modest ironies that propelled both to the heights of political power—Franklin, for instance, was first picked to balance a ticket as “an easterner with an independent reputation [who] had a good record in wartime Washington and…bore a last name the party hoped would appeal to independent voters.” Both Teddy and Franklin, as Ward ably demonstrates in a lucid text, surpassed all that was expected of them and transcended class to embrace an American-ness for which many readers will be nostalgic. Ward’s text is top-flight, as always, but it would be much less so without the superbly curated photographs that accompany it, documenting such things as bracing hunts in the Rockies, anti-lynching demonstrations in Washington and boats full of teenage soldiers powering toward the beaches of Normandy.Excellent, as we have come to expect from the team of Ward and Burns—an eye-opening look at a political dynasty worthy of the name and at a state of politics far better than our own.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780385353069
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 9/9/2014
  • Sold by: Random House
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 528
  • Sales rank: 11,801
  • File size: 98 MB
  • Note: This product may take a few minutes to download.

Meet the Author

Geoffrey C. Ward is the author of seventeen books, including three focused on FDR: Before the Trumpet: Young Franklin Roosevelt, 1882–1905; A First-Class Temperament: The Emergence of Franklin Roosevelt (which won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Biography, the National Book Critics Circle Award, and the Francis Parkman Prize of the Society of American Historians, and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize); and Closest Companion: The Unknown Story of the Intimate Friendship Between Franklin Roosevelt and Margaret Suckley. A longtime collaborator with Ken Burns, he has also won seven Emmys and written twenty-seven historical documentaries for PBS, either on his own or in collaboration with others, including The Roosevelts: An Intimate History.
 
Ken Burns, director and producer of The Roosevelts: An Intimate History, has been making documentary films for more than thirty-five years.  Since the Academy Award–nominated Brooklyn Bridge in 1981, Burns has gone on to direct and produce some of the most acclaimed historical documentaries ever made, including The Civil War, Baseball, Jazz, The War, and The National Parks: America’s Best Idea. Burns’s films have been honored with dozens of major awards, including thirteen Emmy Awards, two Grammy Awards, and two Oscar nominations; and in September 2008, at the News & Documentary Emmy Awards, Burns was honored by the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences with a Lifetime Achievement Award.


From the Hardcover edition.
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 17, 2014

    Superb treatment of the Roosevelt legacy. Well written and infor

    Superb treatment of the Roosevelt legacy. Well written and informative, with much new information. Great illustrations. A must read for any student of American history as well as the casual reader.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 20, 2014

    Had to purchase after viewing the documentary.

    Had to purchase after viewing the documentary.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 14, 2014

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    Posted September 18, 2014

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