FDR'S LAST YEAR by Jim Bishop


Email this review


This mammoth narrative revives the Roosevelt-sold-out-at-Yalta charge and cleverly surrounds it with sympathy for FDR and his allegedly feeble mind. Bishop interviewed acres of witnesses to FDR's decline during the re-election year and he traces, inch by inch, chief doctor Admiral MacIntire's coverup of the President's grave condition. Who can resist the stream of backstairs detail--how tremors forced FDR to give up his favorite pastime of mixing cocktails; how his maiden-lady cousins and his daughter Anna connived to sustain his romance with Lucy Mercer Rutherford; and how, one second after the burial, Eleanor was screeching at Anna, having just learned about Lucy? As for the death itself, no particular of underwear, evacuation or embalming is spared. Next comes a ""where were they then?"" coda, not excluding all the Little People who awaited the funeral train. Even by its own account the book's Yalta canard is simplistic and silly. But for tear-jerking craftsmanship, it must be conceded that Bishop hasn't lost his touch.

Pub Date: Sept. 23rd, 1974
Publisher: Morrow