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Theodore Rex (2001)

by Edmund Morris

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Morris' Theodore Roosevelt (2)

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4,300392,685 (4.18)105
Describes Theodore Roosevelt's presidency as he faced the challenges of a new century in which the United States would become a world power, and discusses his accomplishments and failures, the enemies he made, and his family life.

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This is the second book in Morris' trilogy on Roosevelt's life. I read the first, The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt, a few years ago and rated it 4.5 stars. This one didn't reach that height for me. The impressive research, attention to detail, and smooth writing are all the same, but as this volume dealt with Roosevelt's time as President, there was a lot of information I couldn't keep straight about various bills, Executive Orders, politicians, etc. Still, Morris paints a vivid portrait of T.R. as a transformative figure not only for his party but for the nation. And I very much enjoyed the glimpses into his private life and family.

I look forward to reading the final volume, following T.R. post-Presidential years, later this year.

3.75 stars ( )
1 vote katiekrug | Feb 8, 2024 |
Excellent biography of a fascinating man. ( )
  MickeyMole | Oct 2, 2023 |
Second volume of Edmund Morris's three-volume biography of Theodore Roosevelt--two volumes down, and this is still the best biography I've ever read. Period. Morris not only has a mastery of detail and organization, he is also a fabulous stylist, his sentences flowing and colorful and filled with delicious but not arcane wordplay. It's hard to imagine reading a biography by someone else now, after experiencing the thrill of reading Morris. This volume details Roosevelt's amazing presidency, from its first day to its last, and does so with an immediacy and clarity that are stunning. My highest recommendation. ( )
  jumblejim | Aug 26, 2023 |
For more reviews and bookish posts please visit: https://www.ManOfLaBook.com

Theodore Rex by Edmund Morris is the second installment in the trilogy about the life of President Theodore Roosevelt. This trilogy is considered to be one of the best sources on the life of the 26th President of the United States.

After finishing The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt, I was looking forward to reading this book. I was looking forward to another exciting book, which shined a spotlight on Roosevelt’s eccentric personality, and sense of adventure.

Theodore Rex by Edmund Morris starts where the last one ended, President McKinley died, and Vice-President Roosevelt ascended to the highest office in the land. Politics and policy took front and center in this book, which was interesting, but Mr. Roosevelt’s life to a second seat.

Mr. Morris is certainly a gifted writer, I was especially interested in reading about his conservation policies, the Panama Canal, and the Russo-Japanese War (for which he won the 1906 Nobel Peace Prize) which I knew little about. This is a biography, however, and while it covers these subjects in great detail, personal tragedies and family life only merited a few sentences, a paragraph at the most.

Teddy Roosevelt was a fascinating and exciting man. He shot live rounds in the White House gardens, wrestled with all his children (including the girls), took dignitaries on excruciating hikes, had surgery on his leg with anesthesia, and enjoyed putting on protective gear with an opponent, and beating each other with sticks.
But these excellent stories are few, stuck between pages and pages of policy discussion and politicizing.

Alice Roosevelt or Princess Alice also gets mentioned a lot. I know she was a bona fide celebrity at her time, and even had a color named after her. She is an interesting subject, a wild teen, who became a witty, influential woman, and a magnet for all kinds of mischief and scandal. However, the rest of the family rarely gets mentioned. I can understand that because Alice performed official duties along with her future husband, Nicholas Longworth, and future President William Howard Taft.

The book ends with Teddy Roosevelt living the White House, but on his way for Africa. I read the incredible book, The River of Doubt by Candice Millard, about this journey, and am looking forward to read how the last installment of the trilogy approaches this subject. ( )
  ZoharLaor | Oct 28, 2022 |
A wonderful read about one of our great USA presidents, who certainly did earn to have his face on Mount Rushmoore among the others there =) ( )
  roebi | May 20, 2021 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Edmund Morrisprimary authorall editionscalculated
Chase, HarryNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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THE0D0RE ROOSEVELT became President of the United States without knowing it, at 2:15 in the morning of 14 September 1901.
'It is necessary patiently to wait,' Bunau-Varilla replied, 'until the spring of the imagination of the wicked is dried up, and until truth dissipates the mist of mendacity.'
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Describes Theodore Roosevelt's presidency as he faced the challenges of a new century in which the United States would become a world power, and discusses his accomplishments and failures, the enemies he made, and his family life.

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