I actually cried when it was over. What a misunderstood person and what a great man. Not everything is black and white. A good man can do bad things and vice versa. In the end, measure the good against the bad. Andrew Jackson
comes out in the same league as Lincoln & Washington.
I enjoy non fiction almost exclusively and especially love the history of Rome, the conquest of the Americas, and early American history from the founding of the earliest colonial settlements to the Antebellum rise of the United States.
This is a great story of a man full of contradictions. The story of his rise to general and then to the presidency of the United States is nearly American myth. This book focuses on the White House years and other reviewers have found fault with this limitation. Jackson is a complex figure and this is a great introduction to the many facets of the man and the men and women that surrounded him. Very little time is spent on his role in the war of 1812. This story includes some of the people who helped Jackson gain the presidency and also those who thought his 'monarchy' would bring down the United States. He expanded the powers of the presidency, fought to remove native peoples from their lands, kept the union together, survived assassination attempts and duels, facilitated the expansion and acquisition of more territory, and destroyed the bank of the United States, and this book shares all of this with a great narrator and an engaging story. Enjoy.
A history such as this, in particular a biography, should be "his story". I began this book with very little knowledge of this period of American history. Now I have a greater understanding of Jackson's contribution to American government. But I would have preferred the book to have been written as a story rather than a recitation of dates times places and people.
Jackson did so many great things but he also did so many horrible things. He brought tremendous power to the Presidency which lead to many positives as America became larger but also did many horrible things to the native population and was part of the beginning of the end for Gentlemanly elections in the US.
Overall, a great book and should be required reading for anyone interested in the American Presidency!
This book sounds like it was written by a gossip columnist. I realize it was written by a fine historian, but in dealing with Andrew Jackson, he didn't have much other material to work with.
When Jackson became President, the era of the Founding Fathers was over, and our modern political system was born. If this had been its purpose, the book could have been much shorter - and for me, more interesting.
Jackson, to use his words, was a man of the people - of the political mass, which he identified with completely. The American frontiersmen were just that - crude and greedy - as they made clear by their treatment of the Indians.
This could probably be made into a movie, with the most salacious parts emphasized. The jealousies of the women would provide some interesting character studies, much like a soap opera - which it resembles.
This was very dissapointing. It felt as if the author was trying not to write about Jackson as he would give you a tiny bit of info about Jackson and then go on and on about how Jackson's friend and family reacted. Ugh.