Overall, I really enjoyed this book. First and foremost, I am glad that I chose the abridged version. While I found the topic interesting (if only for the fact that I never really thought about it before), I don't think that I could have been drawn in as completely and consistently for a longer duration. Whether this stems from the topic itself or the fact that I have been listening to many unabridged works lately and just needed a break, I can't be sure. I can say that the book was well-narrated and kept a lively and interesting pace throughout.
As a more or less devout fan of David McCullough and futhermore having enjoyed "The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt" and "Theodore Rex" by Edmund Morris, this was a book that I bought with high expectations. As always , the author weaves a beautiful tale of Roosevelt's early life. Though I enjoyed the book overall, I felt that the beginning was a tad slow. (Details of family excursions, letters and relationships in those formative years one can argue as important, but by and large, I found them pretty dull.) The pace did pick up briskly, however, with Theodore's trip out west and after. Honestly, the reason I think that I didn't like this book as much as the ones by Morris probably stems from personal preference. I simply feel that it is more interesting to hear stories about people of power when they are actually wielding it. (Which is the key reason I found the latter portion of the book a great deal more compelling.) All said, it is a great book and a "must" for hardcore Theodore Roosevelt fans, but probably not as high a priority as the books by Morris for those of general interest in the man's life.
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