Friday, May 23, 2008

John Adams by David McCullough

Jackie recommended this and it's very good. If any of you saw the recent HBO series based on the book, I'd suggest that, although the series was good, the book is better. All I'd heard of Adams in the past was that he wrote extensively to his wife while at the Second Continential Congress and that he also shared a correspondence with Jefferson late in life. The book paints a picture of a complex man who worked hard for his country and his family. I came away with thinking he'd have been a good friend and deserves more praise than he gets. His contribution was major in getting the Declaration of Independence written and approved. He also made multiple contributions during the Revolution and prior to becoming Vice President. Jefferson, on the other hand, was also a complex man who is depicted as a lesser man than Adams when it comes to honesty and a willingness to engage difficult issues. Usually, when the going got tough, Jefferson went to Monticello.

I'm continuely amazed that the U.S. survived the first 80 years of its existance and this book puts an exclamation point to that thought. The book is well written and easy to follow. I found myself actually looking for more anecdotes in a book that is 651 pages. Don't let the length deter you, you'll zip through it. Enjoy.

1 comment:

Amanda said...

Linda referenced this mini-series to me and told me I'd love it... Against my better judgement, I'll check it out. I have a bad feeling about this, though (-: