I've had this book sitting on a shelf for years intending to read it. Now that I have finally listened to it, I can say it more than lives up to the promise of Morris' first volume on Roosevelt, The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt. I give the book itself five stars. The recording, however, has a nasty audio glitch on Part 2 from 02:46:56 to 04:05:16, interference in the form of scratching and blurring that is terribly annoying. So I would give the audio no stars, which averages out to 2.5 stars overall. This is not the quality I have come to expect from audible.com. I will try to contact them about it, but in the meantime, caveat emptor.
The prologue to Unger's book had me worried by the number of superlatives he used to describe Monroe. As I got further into the book, I realized Unger's Monroe was a saint, practically perfect in every way. I found this book to be a one-dimensional portrait of a man, not Unger's saint, whose main legacy, largely ignored by Unger, was bitter party politics (witness the election of 1824) and a refusal to address in any meaningful way the festering sore of slavery.
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