Washington: The Indispensable Man: The Illustrated Edition

Overview

Historian James Thomas Flexner's multi-award-winning and magisterial four-volume biography of George Washington moved beyond what the author termed “the marble image” to reveal the man behind the icon. This updated illustrated edition—based on the bestselling 1974 one-volume abridgement—enhances Flexner's graceful prose with an assortment of rare maps, lost letters, and historical images, giving readers an unmatched perspective on the man whose inspired leadership as soldier and statesman made him the ...

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Overview

Historian James Thomas Flexner's multi-award-winning and magisterial four-volume biography of George Washington moved beyond what the author termed “the marble image” to reveal the man behind the icon. This updated illustrated edition—based on the bestselling 1974 one-volume abridgement—enhances Flexner's graceful prose with an assortment of rare maps, lost letters, and historical images, giving readers an unmatched perspective on the man whose inspired leadership as soldier and statesman made him the indispensable rallying point of a daring revolution and the bulwark of a new nation.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble

James Thomas Flexner's magisterial four-volume biography of George Washington won a National Book Award and a special Pulitzer Prize citation. His one-volume abridgment Washington: The Indispensable Man earned laudatory reviews and became the basis of a popular television miniseries. That volume serves as the fascinating background text to an illustrated edition that illuminates the life of the Father of Our Country in new, often unexpected ways. An attractive Sterling Signature coffee-table hardcover.

Publishers Weekly
Originally published two years before America’s bicentennial, this substantially illustrated biography (an abridged version of the late author’s National Book Award–winning four-volume account of George Washington’s life) tracks the multitalented man from his humble beginnings as a surveyor through his role as a founding father to the newly created presidency, and beyond. Flexner deftly “rescue” Washington from the grip of mythologies that showed him as merely a truth-telling tree-cutter or “a procession of mirrors reflecting” people’s political attitudes, and situates him as “a fallible human being made of flesh and blood and spirit.” Flexner shows him to be a man both burdened and blessed by his “innate inability to separate theory from practice,” a condition of his character that coaxed him to posthumously free all his slaves. With casual readers in mind, the author addresses crucial historical events, revolutionary personalities, key battles, and pressing political issues (while elucidating their contemporary contexts) in consistently crisp and lively language. Featuring numerous portraits, maps, facsimiles, and transcripts (e.g., of Washington’s farewell address), this gorgeous volume solidifies “the multitude of living ghosts” that make up Washington in the popular mind. Illus. (Nov.)
From the Publisher
"Originally published two years before America's bicentennial, this substantially illustrated biography (an abridged version of the late author's National Book Award-winning four-volume account of George Washington's life) tracks the multitalented man from his humble beginnings as a surveyor through his role as a founding father to the newly created presidency, and beyond. Flexner deftly 'rescue[s]' Washington from the grip of mythologies that showed him as merely a truth-telling tree-cutter or 'a procession of mirrors reflecting' people's political attitudes, and situates him as 'a fallible human being made of flesh and blood and spirit.' . . . With casual readers in mind, the author addresses crucial historical events, revolutionary personalities, key battles, and pressing political issues (while elucidating their contemporary contexts) in consistently crisp and lively language. Featuring numerous portraits, maps, facsimiles, and transcripts (e.g., of Washington's farewell address), this gorgeous volume solidifies 'the multitude of living ghosts' that make up Washington in the popular mind." —Publishers Weekly (STARRED REVIEW)
Library Journal
This release is an illustrated, single-volume abridgement of Flexner’s Washington four-volume biography (George Washington, the Forge of Experience, 1732-1775, 1965; George Washington in the American Revolution, 1775-1783, 1968; George Washington and the New Nation, 1783-1793, 1970; and George Washington, Anguish and Farewell, 1793-1799 (1972). It follows Washington from his youth and early life as a soldier and initial successful career as a surveyor through the Revolutionary War, presidency, and beyond. Flexner contends that Washington is shrouded in myth and endeavors to set the record straight. The book is heavily illustrated with portraits, photos, and fold-out maps before each chapter on the battles in which he fought. Handsome and informative.

(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781402778216
  • Publisher: Sterling Signature
  • Publication date: 11/6/2012
  • Series: The Illustrated Editions Series
  • Pages: 452
  • Sales rank: 536,520
  • Product dimensions: 9.10 (w) x 10.10 (h) x 1.50 (d)

Meet the Author

James Thomas Flexner (1908-2003) was the author of the prize-winning, four-volume biography of George Washington, for which he won a National Book Award and a special Pulitzer Prize citation. His one-volume abridgment, Washington: The Indispensable Man (1974), is the basis for Sterling Signature's illustrated edition. Flexner was also the author of The Young Hamilton (on Alexander Hamilton), Mohawk Baronet (on Sir William Johnson), and The Traitor and the Spy: Benedict Arnold and John Andre, and many books on American art.

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