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Destiny of the Republic Audiobook

Destiny of the Republic: A Tale of Madness, Medicine and the Murder of a President

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Publisher's Summary

James A. Garfield may have been the most extraordinary man ever elected president. Born into abject poverty, he rose to become a wunderkind scholar, a Civil War hero, and a renowned and admired reformist congressman. Nominated for president against his will, he engaged in a fierce battle with the corrupt political establishment. But four months after his inauguration, a deranged office seeker tracked Garfield down and shot him in the back.

But the shot didn’t kill Garfield. The drama of what hap­pened subsequently is a powerful story of a nation in tur­moil. The unhinged assassin’s half-delivered strike shattered the fragile national mood of a country so recently fractured by civil war, and left the wounded president as the object of a bitter behind-the-scenes struggle for power—over his administration, over the nation’s future, and, hauntingly, over his medical care. A team of physicians administered shockingly archaic treatments, to disastrous effect. As his con­dition worsened, Garfield received help: Alexander Graham Bell, the inventor of the telephone, worked around the clock to invent a new device capable of finding the bullet.

Meticulously researched, epic in scope, and pulsating with an intimate human focus and high-velocity narrative drive, The Destiny of the Republic will stand alongside The Devil in the White City and The Professor and the Madman as a classic of narrative history.

From the Hardcover edition.

©2011 Candice Millard (P)2011 Random House Audio

What the Critics Say

"[Millard demonstrates] the power of expert storytelling to wonderfully animate even the simplest facts....make[s] for compulsive reading. Superb American history." (Kirkus)

"Splendidly insightful....stands securely at the crossroads of popular and professional history" (Booklist)

“Sparklingly alive…[Millard] brings to life a moment in the nation’s history when access to the president was easy, politics bitter, and medical knowledge slight. Under Millard’s pen, it’s hard to imagine its being better told.” (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

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  •  
    Lisa Maher 08-11-16
    Lisa Maher 08-11-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Full of suspense, drama and American history"

    This is an excellent book for anyone who would like to know more about this little-known President, James Garfield. History aficionados and those who love the suspense of a dramatic novel will enjoy this book. The book reveals much about Garfield's private life, including his marriage, infidelity, parenthood and his aversion to seeking The White House. Haunting parallels are revealed between the assassination of President Lincoln and Garfield. Some scenes are filled with sorrow and suffering; others describe the gruesome details of Garfield's wounds, and others reveal the patriotic fervor that enveloped the national after Garfield was shot in 1881.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gary 08-04-16
    Gary 08-04-16
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    "Absolutely magnificent"

    Portrayals and capturing the times, it gives a portrait of one of the greatest men in American history- that schools never speak of. A man who's measure is needed now more than ever.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sharey 07-27-16
    Sharey 07-27-16 Member Since 2015
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    "Fantastic!"

    Wow! This is one of the best historical non-fiction books I've come across yet! The narration is good and the story is riveting. It's guaranteed to hold your interest.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christopher 07-14-16
    Christopher 07-14-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Great story, great narration!"

    Like others, I picked this on a whim for a change of pace and based on other reviews. Very engaging story about a president who has always been a footnote to me. I especially enjoyed the way the author tied in the stories of other notable characters of the time, along with their role in the larger story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dennis 07-04-16
    Dennis 07-04-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Fantastic Read"

    Candice Millard is a great author and this is another installment of a well researched and well told story of history and Americana.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 06-21-16 Member Since 2016
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    6
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    "Amazing story"

    Why had I never heard of this episode in TDR lore? Exciting, harrowing adventure with heart wrenching warmth. This would be a great car-trip-with-teens listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    BD 06-20-16
    BD 06-20-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Really interesting story"

    Good book and really interesting story but could be half the length and still get the same points across.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Pam Kukla 06-20-16
    Pam Kukla 06-20-16 Member Since 2015
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    "Another great Millard novel!"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Destiny of the Republic to be better than the print version?

    I have only listened to Destiny of the Republic.


    What other book might you compare Destiny of the Republic to and why?

    A comparable book of this quality would have to be Millard's River of Doubt.


    What does Paul Michael bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Probably more attention to details by emphasis that might be missed with just reading in.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I actually listened to it while driving to work and caught myself taking longer routes to get in more listening time.


    Any additional comments?

    I loved this book, just as I did River of Doubt. I hope Millard is planning another one soon.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Maggie California 05-19-16
    Maggie California 05-19-16 Member Since 2013
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    "Narrator is terrible"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Destiny of the Republic to be better than the print version?

    I suspect the print version might be better. It is a good story about a man I knew little about, clearly an admirable man.


    How could the performance have been better?

    The narrator is really bad. His character voices are laughable, most especially his attempts to muster a female voice; verges on parody. It is a pleasant voice, just not a skilled reader.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jane-O Adirondacks, NY 05-16-16
    Jane-O Adirondacks, NY 05-16-16
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    "Gripping tale of under-known president"

    If you want to learn how James Garfield, Alexander Graham Bell & Joseph Lister all connect, you will find this book fascinating.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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