Washington: A Life

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Washington: A Life Americana
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This richly nuanced portrait of the father of United States delivers a crisply paced narrative that carries the reader through Washington's troubled boyhood, his precocious feats in the French and Indian War, his creation of Mount Vernon, his heroic exploits with the Continental Army, his presiding over the Constitutional Convention, and his culminating performance as America's first president. Yet, despite the reverence his name inspires, Washington remains a lifeless waxwork for many Americans. Worthy but dull. Here, in this groundbreaking work based on massive research, celebrated biographer Ron Chernow shatters forever the stereotype of a stolid, unemotional man. He brings to life a dashing, passionate man of fiery opinions and many moods. Probing his private life, Chernow explores Washington's fraught relationship with his crusty mother, his youthful infatuation with the married Sally Fairfax, and his often conflicted feelings toward his adopted children and grandchildren. Chernow also provides a lavishly detailed portrait of Washington's marriage to Martha and his complex behavior as a slave master. Most of all, the book produces an astute and surprising portrait of a canny political genius who knew how to inspired preople. Notes, Bibliography, Index. B&W illus. 904p.

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