ONE MAN ALONE: Richard Nixon by Ralph de Toledano

ONE MAN ALONE: Richard Nixon

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KIRKUS REVIEW

This is a new, updated Version of the author's approving portrait from 1956 (Nixon) and the hues are still nice and rosy. De Toledano's past writings have revealed a passionate conservatism and a keen eye for Communist dupes which don't show quite as blatantly here, though his partisan feelings for ""close friend"" Dick are clear enough, He does, however, point out repeatedly the ""lack of the more human juices"" appropriate to his ""loner"" theme as he traces the many faces, all earnest, of the maturing Richard Nixon: the boy of humble background living by storybook precepts of honesty, hard work, and a helping hand for one's fellow man; the energetic young scholar and campus leader copping such honors as the Reader's Digest Southern Conference Extemporaneous Speaking Contest championship; the dutiful suitor who drove Pat to dates with other beaux; the apprentice Congressman tagged by colleagues as overeager and by press pundits as ""the greenest Congressman in town."" After that it's on to national prominence through the Hiss case, the ""rocking, socking campaign on both sides"" against Helen Gahagan Douglas, the Vice-Presidential nomination in '52, and the emotional Checkers speech which saved his place on the ticket. Ike, doesn't come off too well with his ambivalent attitude toward Nixon, but Dick looks good all the time. The 1960 election was lost through ""the religious issue, bad luck and faulty, instinct,"" but luck and instinct are right on target on the remarkable comeback trail, and we leave Nixon pondering alone in the Lincoln Room. De Toledano explains the conservatives' affection-disaffection syndrome vis-a-vis Nixon and his constant ability to surprise detractors by their readiness to see him as a paper tiger of their own making, but the Nixon he has constructed here is pretty paper-thin too.

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1969
Publisher: Funk & Wagnalls