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Location: Newark, Delaware, United States

I'm just like you, only worse.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I purchased this book because I was curious to learn more about the man behind the legend. Sadly, I am woefully ignorant of much of the history of my country, other than the broad overview I learned during those long-gone days I was but a youthful schoolboy. Since those who don't study history are doomed to repeat it, I thought I'd better start reading up.

I was afraid that the book would would be dry and boring, but I shouldn't have worried. Author Joseph J. Ellis has produced a book that is both informative and entertaining. His style is engaging, witty, and easy to comprehend. He obviously has a great admiration for his subject, but he does attempt to maintain objectivity.

The picture Ellis paints of Washington is that of an ambitious, passionate, yet self-restrained man; opinionated but often reticent, aware of his own shortcomings and willing to listen to those with greater expertise. First and foremost, the author describes George Washington as the central, stabilizing force which both drove the fight for independence, and held the fledgling country together during its formative years.

All in all, an insightful read, and a rare look into the man himself, as opposed to the historical figure.


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