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John Adams

de David McCullough

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11,948182421 (4.32)478
The Pulitzer Prize-winning, bestselling biography of America's founding father and second president that was the basis for the acclaimed HBO series, brilliantly told by master historian David McCullough. In this powerful, epic biography, David McCullough unfolds the adventurous life journey of John Adams, the brilliant, fiercely independent, often irascible, always honest Yankee patriot who spared nothing in his zeal for the American Revolution; who rose to become the second president of the United States and saved the country from blundering into an unnecessary war; who was learned beyond all but a few and regarded by some as "out of his senses"; and whose marriage to the wise and valiant Abigail Adams is one of the moving love stories in American history. This is history on a grand scale--a book about politics and war and social issues, but also about human nature, love, religious faith, virtue, ambition, friendship, and betrayal, and the far-reaching consequences of noble ideas. Above all, John Adams is an enthralling, often surprising story of one of the most important and fascinating Americans who ever lived.… (més)
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I enjoyed reading this book and it took me some to return to it and complete the tome. I would advise readers to complete the task after a break, to another book if required, and then march on again. This book was highly enjoyable, readable and portrayed an interesting picture of Adams. I was quite interested in how the other Cabinet Ministers would be portrayed in their roles against Adams. ( )
  thegeneral | Jan 12, 2022 |
History has been unkind and unfair to John Adams for the most part. I mentioned to one of my sons that I was reading this book, and I got this feedback: "He was all about making the president the most powerful part of the government and wanted the president to be addressed as "Your Excellency" (okay, that part is true), and he pretty much wanted to have an American monarchy."

His comment was a sandwich, one bit of fact sandwiched between two slanderous lies. But this was what my son had been taught. Oddly enough, I remember learning absolutely nothing about John Adams other than that he was our nation's second president and people didn't like him. Once again, this was a mixture of fact and myth.

I am so happy I took the time to read all 651 pages of this marvelous book. Adams, like all human beings, was imperfect. That's no surprise. What was a surprise is how honest, sincere, persistent, and intelligent he was. He was decidedly NOT a monarchist, nor was he universally disliked. He was a victim, starting with his vice-presidency under George Washington, of party politics. It was enlightening to discover that our current polarization is nothing new. It has been with us from the beginning. Adams was not a willing participant and his reputation has been wounded to this day because of it.

But I found so much to admire about him in this biography. He was a stout and loyal friend for life to many; he was a devoted and truly loving husband to Abigail and father to his children. But most important to us, he was devoted to the welfare of the fledgling democracy that he had been indispensable in founding.

McCullough also gives us a rare peek at what life was like in those times, as well as into character traits of such American mythological beings as Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, and George Washington. It was an easy, put-your-feet-up-and-savor-every-word kind of book for me. I highly recommend it. ( )
  Library_Lin | Oct 4, 2021 |
I had forgotten how much of a storyteller McCullough is. He really knows how to make history walk off the pages. Unfortunately, I didn't have the rooms to finish it in the time alloted by my local library (as wonderful as it is). But I will come back to this one. ( )
  OutOfTheBestBooks | Sep 24, 2021 |
If you love the Revolutionary Era like I do, read this book. It's an appropriate testament to the epic life of a titan of American history, a gripping narrative that encompasses so many other legendary characters, and just an all-around awesome tome.

So many incredible people gathered in 1776 and the decisive decades that followed in order to produce this country: Adams, Jefferson, Washington, Hamilton--and Abigail, whom I have to count in this list as one of the most lovable characters in American history. She's so awesome and good and just tells it like it is. And her husband totally knew what a catch he'd found.

I think what makes Adams himself so relatable is that he left so much of his mind out in the open to posterity through his letters. He also, as McCullough sometimes implies, just seems so much more honest than Jefferson, and so much less mysterious than Washington. His intentions were always good, whereas Jefferson comes off as sly and two-faced at many moments. He's a great character: Flecked with conspicuous flaws, gifted, ambitious, and genuine, John Adams would totally've been my BFF, and Abigail too. (He was also a skillful writer, one of the best of the founding generation, and for that, too, I would more than allow him to be friends with me.)

Another reason why I love this era of American history, and why it seems so epic, is that to us, the Revolution seemed inevitable, "Common Sense," and the assured duration of the country even more so--yet to the founders, the Revolution and the United States were anything but. I think Joseph J. Ellis in Founding Brothers, which I read almost three years ago to the day for APUSH and absolutely loved, articulates the evitable-ness of the era most beautifully. (That book is so awesome, btw. These two complement each other really well.)

Speaking of beautiful writing, David McCullough is the bomb. I was totally hooked on this book and on every turn and twist in Adams's path. (Not gonna lie, I cried when Abigail died.) Though Adams's life and personality just lends itself to a fascinating biography, and though one would think the job shouldn't be too hard with all the evidence to posterity that he left during his life, McCullough could not have done a more elegant job.


( )
  Gadi_Cohen | Sep 22, 2021 |
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  hpryor | Aug 8, 2021 |
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Nom de l'autorCàrrecTipus d'autorObra?Estat
David McCulloughautor primaritotes les edicionscalculat
Herrmann, EdwardNarradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Runger, NelsonNarradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
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We live, my dear soul, in an age of trial. What will be the consequence I know not. - John Adams to Abigail Adams, 1774
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For our sons David, William, and Geoffrey
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In the cold, nearly colorless light of a New England winter, two men on horseback traveled the coast road below Boston, heading north.
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I must judge for myself, but how can I judge, how can any man judge, unless his mind has been opened and enlarged by reading,
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The Pulitzer Prize-winning, bestselling biography of America's founding father and second president that was the basis for the acclaimed HBO series, brilliantly told by master historian David McCullough. In this powerful, epic biography, David McCullough unfolds the adventurous life journey of John Adams, the brilliant, fiercely independent, often irascible, always honest Yankee patriot who spared nothing in his zeal for the American Revolution; who rose to become the second president of the United States and saved the country from blundering into an unnecessary war; who was learned beyond all but a few and regarded by some as "out of his senses"; and whose marriage to the wise and valiant Abigail Adams is one of the moving love stories in American history. This is history on a grand scale--a book about politics and war and social issues, but also about human nature, love, religious faith, virtue, ambition, friendship, and betrayal, and the far-reaching consequences of noble ideas. Above all, John Adams is an enthralling, often surprising story of one of the most important and fascinating Americans who ever lived.

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