An excellent one volume biography, written with neither an attempt to gloss over the facts nor debunk. Here is the story of the events and the people in Washington's life that shaped the headstrong, hot-headed Virginian youth into the man who could ride out defeat, achieve victory, and serve his country in the thankless job of President and secure what his armies and negotiators had won. There's the portrait of his mother, Mary Ball, who through some missteps had alienated her son, but who first stirred him to fierce consideration of his own rights. There's Lawrence, beloved half-brother. And Sally Fairfax, his one great love, married to a friend and neighbor and benefactor. And Martha Custis, who became his wife, her children whom he took as his own, and her children's children. The text is based on private and public writings, on records of friends and associates, and the figure of Washington the man emerges from the pages. A good introductory biography for those to whom the Freeman looms too large. Readable.