This is a classic. The story of Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt has always fascinated me. Doris Kearns Goodwin has done a magnificent job with this. She covers not only the war years, but goes back and gives us the story of these two amazing people from their early childhood, which lets us know how them came to be the people they were in their middle and later years. Even though I didn't really learn much new from this book, I enjoyed every minute of it. I got very caught up in the story, and was dreading the end because I knew that President Roosevelt would die before the end of the war. Silly, I guess, but that's how good the writing was.
The reader was more than adequate. He was able to change his voice enough so that I was always aware of which character was speaking. I just sort of wish that Ms. Goodwin had read the book herself, because I do like her voice. But that's just my own personal taste.
Whether or not you know the history of this time, the book is a definite "must read".
I have edited 38 national best sellers and had a writing fellowship from the National Endowment for the Humanities.
This wonderful book discusses WWII from a much more personal perspective than any I've read. While FDR was the politician and brain of the country at this time, Eleanor was the heart and conscience. She discovered her husband's affair when she was in her mid-thirties and thereafter pretty much went her own way, to the great advantage of social causes in the United States. She was a Civil Rights, Women's Rights, and Labor Rights activist throughout these years and prompted profound advances by pressuring her husband about these causes in the White House. I had no idea.
Nelson Runger's narration was excellent. He does a credible imitation of FDR and Churchill, and his delivery for Eleanor was subtly singsong and high pitched.
The Eleanor-Franklin relationship
It was told well. Opinions and amateur psychology was scarce and clearly separated from facts
Don't know. I like to be read to, apparently
A love story
It's a story of the love between Eleanor and Franklin, of the country for both, of both for the country. There isn't much new to me about WWII but context of FDR decisions are clear. Eleanor was much more than most women could be even now. I found myself wanting to ask my parents what it was like living in that time - has it ever been so hopeful since? I'd like to repeal the presidential term limit.
I loved Lincoln and I love this! Doris Kearns Goodwin has a way of making history more interesting than I ever thought it could be. The book weaves facts and history with insight into Eleanor and FDR as human beings with desires and flaws. The WW2 details are incredible. This book will alter your perspective on the state of the world.
The amount of research that Doris Kearns Goodwin puts into her writing is commendable. Knowing that what you are reading or listening to is not historical fiction, but fact based upon evidence is refreshing.
Eleanor Roosevelt was an amazing woman. Her strength of character and her ideals lead to some of the most radical changes in American culture.
I have not listened to other recordings by Nelson Runger, but this one was good. My only complaint is that some of the pauses between sections were so long that I thought he was moving on to another chapter.
Inside the Roosevelt White House
Great story, the organization of details is sometimes disjointed, but overall easy to follow the characters through time.
paperless office maven
This is a must read if you are interested in American history. I am 65 and I have read hundreds of books on WWII. None told the story as well as this book. It is hard to imagine the US in 1939 and to compare the world my parents grew up in and the world I grew up in the 1950's. It has the best analysis of our entry into the war and a better explanation of why the US took some actions or did not take others than any I have every read. Most history book concentrate on what happened. This explains why it happened and the great changes that occurred in the US in the 1940's. If you want to understand things in 2014 you should read or listen to this book.
Definitely for anyone interested in the period before and during WWII on the homefront.
Yes, he's a very good narrator.
Yes, but ended up listening to this book in spurts on many drives.
I am a voracious audiobook listener. I listen to everything: fiction, business, technology, politics...I need an interesting story, intriguing characters, and a fast pace to keep me interested.
Perhaps. I read it BECAUSE Doris Kearns Goodwin had written it. I've seen her on PBS, and I've always liked her work.
Sadly, Mr. Runger, I will be avoiding your narrations in the future.
Ms. Goodwin's thorough research.
1. He has a melodromatic style. Remember Gary Owens, the announcer on "Laugh In" who "over did" his narration. Mr. Runger has that style. Sadly, I fear he is not trying to be ironic or comedic as Mr. Owens certainly was.
2. His women, especially Elanor (Elanor Franklin for goodness sake) were thin, wispy, vapid.
3. I finished the whole book. I did not enjoy it, I ENDURED it. The reading was very, very difficult to abide.
The revolving cast of characters who came and stayed in the White House during this time was mind boggling. Each in their own way shaped the events of the World War. Diaries, letters and journals weave the story of these eclectic bunch. Through them you get the story behind the story. The reader is given an insight into the unusual relationship between Franklin & Eleanor. We see how she shaped the course of things at home while he handled the war. She was a civil rights leader and helped win some victories for the negroes, women and the GIs. The author does pose questions about some of the decisions Roosevelt made. Two in particular are the rounding up of the Japanese & interring them in camps and his lack of response to the Jewish Holocaust. Roosevelt was a ladies man and surrounded himself with lovely ladies. His affair with Lucy Mercier is well documented. Eleanor had many lady friends and one male friend. Her letters are very Victorian and would lead the uninformed person to believe they were part of a tawdry affair. The author hints at this with both Franklin And Eleanor. We drag what we don't understand through the mud. To say the least it was an unusual mix of people that surrounded the President and his wife. I pick up this book because I had read her book "Team of Rivals about Lincoln's eclectic cabinet. It is an 800 page book but well worth the read. If you are interested in Roosevelt and World War 2, I would recommend "Franklin and Winston" by Jon Meacham. This an excellent book on their relationship as they fight the war. Nelson Runger has the kind of voice that is easy to listen to. He does each character in their own voice. I would recommend him as a great voice with superb tone and dictation.
Yes As I stated I had read Team of Rivals before this.
Smooth, tone & diction
Not a movie goer.
Historian turned Construction Executive Try my book Two Million Bricks (not yet on Audible)
I love listening to Edward Herrmann and would listen to this again as it was so chock full of interesting tid bits
Goodwin treated FDR and Eleanor as two tragic overachievers that did not really spend the time to stay a couple. I was most interested in the description of the deep friendships of the Roosevelt's and their many house guests.
Edward Herrman was this reader and I could see the part he did many years ago
Too long but easy to pick up and put down without loosing a spot