Audie Award, History/Biography, 2015
After Presidents Franklin D. Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln, Doris Kearns Goodwin wields her magic on another larger-than-life president, and another momentous and raucous American time period as she brings Theodore Roosevelt, the muckraking journalists, and the Progressive Era to life.
As she focused on the relationships between Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt in No Ordinary Time, and on Lincoln and his team in Team of Rivals, Goodwin describes the broken friendship between Teddy Roosevelt and his chosen successor, William Howard Taft. With the help of the "muckraking" press - including legendary journalists Ida Tarbell, Lincoln Steffens, William Allen White, and editor Sam McClure - Roosevelt had wielded the Bully Pulpit to challenge and triumph over abusive monopolies, political bosses, and corrupting money brokers. Roosevelt led a revolution that he bequeathed to Taft only to see it compromised as Taft surrendered to money men and big business. The rupture between the two led Roosevelt to run against Taft for president, an ultimately futile race that resulted in the election of Democrat Woodrow Wilson and the diminishment of Theodore Roosevelt's progressive wing of the Republican Party.
Like Goodwin's chronicles of the Civil War and the Great Depression, The Bully Pulpit describes a time in our history that enlightened and changed the country, ushered in the modern age, and produced some unforgettable men and women.
©2013 Doris Kearns Goodwin (P)2013 Simon & Schuster
“Few audio productions this year are likely to match, or deserve as much praise as, this history of the Progressive Era and the presidential friendship that shaped, and was destroyed by, its politics… Edward Herrmann is simply her most simpatico reader…his steady, unflagging delivery is perfectly attuned to her narrative voice and, without mimicry, to the broad array of voices, personalities, and events that highlight this rich personal and social drama.” (AudioFile)
“Swiftly moving account of a friendship that turned sour, broke a political party in two and involved an insistent, omnipresent press corps. . . . It’s no small achievement to have something new to say on Teddy Roosevelt’s presidency, but Goodwin succeeds admirably. A notable, psychologically charged study in leadership.”(Kirkus Reviews, Starred Review)
LOVED IT!!! I felt as if I was living during the 1880s thru 1930s. It was so exciting really learning about how politics and journalism shape our country. As we approach this election, 104 years later, I have a much different perspective of the candidates and the PARTIES.
Once again, Goodwin has written a masterpiece. The topic itself is engaging, and Goodwin digs into the historical material with care and enthusiasm. She also weaves the facts into a compelling and thoroughly enjoyable narrative. There are few serious scholars with Goodwin's skill at storytelling. Moreover, the narration was very well done. Clean and crisp, consistent without being boring. Highly recommend both this book and this audiobook.
A lot of reading/listening for some good insight into history. The reader is great. The story is educational, but I would prefer to hear the highlights on this one if I had to do it over again.
Profoundly well researched & presented. This book absolutely brings to life the political careers of T Roosevelt and W Taft, the press- the "fourth branch" of the government, and the United States. It is so much more germane now!
Teddy Roosevelt and Howard Taft... Good time to listen to this book - there seems to a historical echo of sorts with this period of election and political class history and that of these gentlemen. The biographical material reminds us that past the achievements are hopes that fail as well as succeed. The recurring theme of Taft's dream to be on the Supreme Court was one of many interesting motifs that ran through the book...good to add some depth to my high school American history caricature of Teddy Roosevelt's " walk softly and carry a big stick." Narrator Edward Herrmann is fantastic.
Author, narrator and story in the lives of these two Presidents was very informative and easy to comprehend. Two great men...two great friends.
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