This continues one of the great series in American history. LBJ is one of the most interesting and complex characters in US history, and Robert Caro is one of the great writers of nonfiction. This combination cannot be beat. The earlier books are great, but this book stands on its own as well. There is a lot on the Kennedy brothers (Jack and Bobby) which I enjoyed as well. The book covers Johnson's years running for VP with Kennedy, his years a vice president, and the first few months of his presidency. This held my attention like an engaging novel. I learned a lot too. I cannot speak highly enough about Robert Caro and his LBJ series.
This is a fairly long book, and for the first time, I read the ebook version, and tried Whisper Sync to switch back and forth between audio and reading. The narrator was great, and the synching was all automatic! I did need to download the Audible app on my iPhone, and listen through that and not iTunes. When I switched devices, within 5 seconds, I was asked if I wanted to go forward to the spot the other device was at. This book was equally compelling reading or listening.
Caro's work is necessary for historical perspective of this critical period on America's history & he delivers.
The performance of the reader is exemplary & thoroughly enjoyable. His reading of the Mark Twain autobiography & this series makes Grover the top of his profession.
This very long book could have been written and understood in about half the time. The author's intent is to cover the period 1958-1963 and it did. It also gave background on Johnson's upbringing, which contributed to the book. Crystal clear, the conflict between the Kennedys and Johnson. It's also apparent that Johnson's political acumen was critical to the transition after JFK's assassination to both continuity and making the presidency his own. Also notable, his successful passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 after a history of reelection from a segregated South. Finally, he was a ruthless politician. I've had enough LBJ, don't intend to read the other three books on his life and political career.
Faced with mindless duty, when an audio book player slips into a rear pocket and mini buds pop into ears, old is made new again.
Though Robert Caro’s advancing years may make him seem like a ghost writer for Plutarch, he continues to turn out the best biographies being written in the 21st century. After reading “The Power Broker” (published in 1974 about Robert Moses and land planning in New York), one becomes witness to the power of Caro’s research and dramatic skill in reporting on post-20th-century American’ movers and shakers. His next project, after “The Power Broker” became Lyndon Baines Johnson, the 36th President of the United States.
A left-wing liberal says Obama compromises too much while a right-wing conservative says Obama does not compromise at all; neither is correct. Extreme positions are rarely correct. The life and times of Lyndon Johnson are not unlike the life and times of Barrack Obama. The concern is that President Obama, though extremely persuasive, does not have the congressional’ experience that gave Lyndon Johnson the wisdom, and a “stick”, that could make Congress act.
Robert Caro’s book, “The Passage of Power”, is a lesson in history that offers insight to governing America today.
Mountainbiker, Skier, Riverman, Dzedo
I will have to. There is only so much a reader can grasp on first reading. When you are in the hands of such a master, a replay is something to embrace. Hope there is a volume 5.
The only books to compare this to is Carl Sandburg's books on Lincoln. Caro is a national treasure and these four books are his gift to America.
Lying in bed at 2 AM with the lights out. GG's voice in the dark telling you the story of one of the most pivotal moments in American History, the assassination of an American President and LBJ's rise to the peak of political power. This is LBJ at his most admirable.
What's the presidency for?
I must say I really didn't know what to expect when delving into this monumental piece of work. However, after researching the reviews and having toured the Johnson Ranch plus living in Austin, it seemed somewhat essential to read.
Caro is the unrivaled master of weaving the minutia into a grand tapestry. He never fails to set the historical stage for each moment of Johnson's career, and that's never more important than it is in the year's covered in this book -- 1960 to 1964 -- the years he lost to John F. Kennedy in the Democratic primary, became his running mate in the 1960 general election, and then assumed power upon Kennedy's assassination in 1963. It's at that moment, the moment of the assassination, that this book truly hits its stride.
I recommend if you're randomly searching for a biography. I'm currently starting the first book in this series now.
Biography as every author ought to read. History as well as art. All of this series is essential if one wants to know what Johnson was.
Grover Gardner is simply the best narrator working today. He has brought to life all four volumes of the LBJ series by Robert Caro. No one is better.
Compelling story of America as seen through the remarkable career of that complicated
political figure, Lyndon Johnson. Given changes in publications today, we may never again see a series like this that has taken Robert Caro close to 40 years to research and write, with on final volume to come
This book provides amazing insights to the individuals and workings of our national political system in the late 1950's- 60's. It is not pretty but it is honest. The contradictions within LBJ are beyond imagination. A powerful political leader as we do not see today, but a human figure with failings as well as strengths. I am looking forward to the next book.
I must admit that I am not a great fan of Lyndon B. Johnson-especially since I place great blame on him for the Vietnam war. That being said, upon finishing this book I acquired a great deal of respect for President Johnson- especially in light of the way he handled himself during the time period that is covered in this book. The humiliation that he faced while serving as Vice President and his ability to hold up to being ostracized by the Kennedy White House inner circle during the Kennedy Administration are very well portrayed in this book- and have in part changed my opinion of him. But my greatest respect for him is reserved for the way in which he almost single handedly pushed through the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
As he always does, the author does a great job in describing and analyzing all of the events from Johnson's election as Vice President to the passage of the Civil Rights Act. Grover Gardner does a great job (as he almost always does) narrating the book. I am really looking forward to his next volume on Johnson's life.
This book is well worth the listen.