Meant for Audio!!! I'm not sure if I would have attempted this book in print, but I was addicted to the audiobook!
I don't have the words to describe the experience of listening to this audiobook. It is a true masterpiece of Historic Nonfiction.
Yes, it's compelling, amazingly well-researched, well-written, interesting and very important. The book has won many awards, no surprise there! It is a remarkable work.
Don't let that scare you away!
This great forgotten piece of history is accessible and tremendously interesting.
Initially, I had no particular interest in the topic. I have read/listened River of Doubt by Candice Millard. It is the brilliantly written story of Teddy Roosevelt's unbelievably dangerous and semi-suicidal trip through unknown lands of the Amazon. The trip actually takes place after the events in this book. I was more than impressed with Roosevelt after that story. That was my only real frame of reference, besides the story that goes around about Taft becoming so corpulent that he became stuck in a bathtub.
A whole world was opened for me through The Bully Pulpit. These men and their wives and friends became three dimensional. I felt the entire range of human emotion listening to this book. Why doesn't history get taught like this in school??
This topic turned out to be far more essential and important than I could have realized. I think it is a book everyone should read (listen to actually) because it tells of a pivotal time in American History. These were the last decades of America as a fledgling country. As this book ends, and through the actions of the very characters if this book, America begins a new chapter as an emerging superpower.
This is also the story of a friendship that guides the country. Ultimately that friendship will turn into something ugly and sad. It will change the career and lives of Taft and Roosevelt forever.
I was actually a little bit lost when I finished this mammoth audiobook. I had a hard time finding anything to hold my interest, much less anything up to the standard of this writing. I hope to see much more from this author in the future!!!
I was not interested in the life of Rockefeller when I bought this. I got it truly bc of the reviews and the fact that it was one of the only Chernow books NOT narrated by Scott Brick. (Sorry I know lots like him, but I've gotten a little tired Scott brick.)
I knew about Roosevelt's trustbusting and Ida Tarbel's newspaper attacks, but not from the perspective of those who were victims of much scrutiny and hatred. Tarbel in particular went too far.
I sludged through first two or three hours, then I was hooked. I learned SO much about how big businesses worked back then. The most interesting part of book for me was the way the family charities evolved into serious organizations whose members won Nobel prizes for curing diseases and saving countless lives. Many will be surprised at the state of medicine in America before the Rockefeller Institute for scientific research in medicine. The charities are so numerous. I especially was impressed with his work to raise education in the south.
Chernow is an outstanding historian. He covers every aspect of every story. Good and bad. He creates both the savage business man and the well meaning family man. He shows us the humanity that was lost on so many others who abused him personally about his looks and his illness, they even attacked his family. I did feel sorry for the man at times!
Definitely interesting and beyond well-written. Great Performance by Grover Gardner!! As usual... (Why didn't he read George Washington????)
Enthralling collection of essays about the US Civil War. Lots of little known facts, and fresh look at all aspects of the controversy.
Incredibly entertaining. Expertly narrated!
Definitely don't pass this one up!