His Excellency

IMG_0571Ellis, Joseph J. His Excellency: George Washington. New York: Afred A Knopf, 2004.

In honor of Presidents’ Day and Washington’s birthday. The LT review: Ellis writes in an easy, flowing style. Almost conversational in tone, Washington’s life comes alive as the pages turn. While not a great deal of evidence of Washington’s personal life has survived, Ellis does a fantastic job filling in the gaps with Washington’s military career and political rise to power. The text is supplemented by a few pages of photographs – mostly portraits Washington had commissioned of himself.

A few of my favorite quotes that make Washington seem less historical and more human. First, a  description of Washington as a 20-something year old man: “He was the epitome of the man’s man: physically strong, mentally enigmatic, emotionally restrained” (p 12).
A commnet on Washington’s unique military order: “…when a ranger…is killed in action, continue his salary for 28 days to pay for his coffin” (p 26).

BookLust Twist: From More Book Lust in the chapter “Founding Fathers” (p 91). Last month I read about Benjamin Franklin from the same chapter. Note to self: Self, don’t read anything from that chapter in March!

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