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The Final Days by Bob Woodward

The Final Days (1976)

by Bob Woodward, Carl Bernstein, Carl Bernstein

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What a fascinating read. I was 16 years old when President Nixon resigned. I have vivid memories of my mother glued to the television screen during the Watergate hearings. Now, as an adult, reading this detailed a counting of Nixon's final months in office I am struck by the similarity between Nixon and Trump's personalities. This account bvb thing was riveting to read. The perpetual state of limbo in which Nixon's loyal staffers existed is hard to fathom. The differentiation between the man and the office, as well as a President's sense of being a person who will be assessed by historians was quite powerful. I do not envy anybody who works for a boss who lies. I also finish reading this book thinking that it seems next to impossible to be in politics and to maintain one's integrity. ( )
  hemlokgang | Sep 2, 2018 |
As much as [All the President's Men] received the glory and the movie, this book is extraordinary in its own right. It is deep and full of detail of the (mostly men) who worked very hard to save Richard Nixon from himself. Many believed in the man as well as the office, but the hard work over years and the frustration they faced as their hard work yielded greater controversy.

There is a cast of characters at the beginning, an index at the end, and a chronology just before the index. I referred to these three sections repeatedly, as the first portion is divided into chapters that detail, through personal recollections and interviews, the meetings between lawyers, the discussions with Nixon, the drafts and the changes to the transcripts, the fight to release the transcript, and so much that went on to which the public was not privy at the time.

In discussions about Watergate and references to it, I feel much more knowledgeable about the impact and magnitude of the many events that covered those two years (was it only two years??). It was much more than the break-in, the reporting, then Nixon resigned; there were a lot of dedicated people who saw their president and presidency crumble, and they worked to serve their country as they saw best. ( )
  threadnsong | Jun 29, 2017 |
I never stop being fascinated by this; it's absolutely gripping, and it really shouldn't be -- we know the ending. Most of these people don't matter in the long-term. And yet.

There's one part I keep coming back to; when the transcripts of the Oval Office tapes are released, in their shoddy, slipshod condition, one of the people who reads them makes an amazing remark (from my perspective), that releasing the tapes, with their revelations of personal ugliness, was the real crime. "A violation of the public's right not to know." ( )
  cricketbats | Mar 30, 2013 |
This has to be one of the definitive books on Nixon's last days, appears to be based on sound research, and deriving from the journalistic rock stars Woodward and Bernstein it will remain influential for some time. Nixon was a complex man and the journalistic pair may to harshly misunderstand him. For example, just before resigning the writers report he is suicidal, and yet, not long after and publicly he was composed and completely rational. The truth is elusive. Nonetheless, there are memorable scenes, Nixon down on his knees praying with Kissinger portrays an indelible image.
  gmicksmith | Mar 4, 2012 |
This book gives an incredibly detailed account of the events starting with the Congressional investigation of Watergate that lead to the resignation of President Nixon. It is a gripping story of battles fought; principles tested; political maneuvering; and a portrait of loyalties and pride in the Nixon Whitehouse. We see Nixon and his staff attempt to outmaneuver the special Watergate prosecutors Jaworski and Cox, who alternately succeed and fail as disloyal legislators and former staff make statements and reveal information that is damaging and unexpected. Nixon thinks he can control the situation, and as he slowly realizes he cannot, he relies on loyalties and trust to see him through. But neither the staunch Republican leaders in Congress, nor his four Supreme court appointees will side with him. Even his own personal lawyers struggle to be faithful to their client and to their ethical duty. Soon enough they and the family learn that Nixon has been lying to them all. This is a dramatic portrait of a man and an episode that goes down as one of the most difficult tests of the American constitutional system. ( )
  mrminjares | Sep 23, 2010 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Bob Woodwardprimary authorall editionscalculated
Bernstein, Carlmain authorall editionsconfirmed
Bernstein, Carlmain authorall editionsconfirmed
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To those who generously gave us their time, their recollections, motes, diaries, memos, files - and candor; they made this book possible.
Also to Francie and to Nora.
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This was an extraordinary mission.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0671222988, Hardcover)

The Final Days is the classic, behind-the-scenes account of Richard Nixon's dramatic last months as president. Moment by moment, Bernstein and Woodward portray the taut, post-Watergate White House as Nixon, his family, his staff, and many members of Congress strained desperately to prevent his inevitable resignation. This brilliant book reveals the ordeal of Nixon's fall from office -- one of the gravest crises in presidential history.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:17:59 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

The Washington Post reporters draw on interviews, leaks, and investigations to reconstruct the events and circumstances, in and outside the White House, during the unsettled and unsettling final weeks of the Nixon administration.

» see all 3 descriptions

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