Lynch sketches Lyndon Johnson's career in broad strokes--the inveterate political animal who found Congress an ideal stage for his talents; the accidental president who grew to fit the job but overplayed his hand pursuing an unpopular war because he didn't understand the realities of executive power. This narrative assimilates something from just about every Johnson observer from Jim Bishop to David Halberstam. But, ultimately, who wants to read a biography of Johnson that chronicles his establishment of the Marble Canyon national monument, but never mentions Eugene McCarthy's presidential campaign. . . and that states that the bombing of North Vietnam ended (once and for all, it's implied) before Johnson left office? A humanizing, dispassionate overview but just too diluted to be worth the effort.