HARRY S. TRUMAN: A Pictorial Biography by Joseph Gies

HARRY S. TRUMAN: A Pictorial Biography

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Lately all the historians like Truman. The Oxford History of the American People, for example, calls him ""an inconspicuous-looking President, but one of the most conspicuously successful."" Gies seems to take this statement for his text and go on from there to show that the Man from Missouri was a tough little fighter with strong liberal principles, and, as the Big Three meeting showed, the ability to shamble about in FDR's huge shoes: ""Five years after the summer of his political nadir, Harry Truman sat at the pinnacle. There was no higher point in politics on the globe than his chair in the Cecilienhof."" Gies's book is definitely pro-Harry. On the touchy problem of dropping the bomb, he says that Truman was not properly briefed: he thought it was a big bomb, not an entirely new concept in weaponry. On the dirty machine politics, he suggests that Truman's friends were crooked but Truman was straight. Gies, who currently is an editor for the Encyclopedia Britannica, manages to make his rose-colored glasses glitter--it's not a grade school primer portrait at all.

Pub Date: Nov. 22nd, 1968
Publisher: Doubleday