In this, the first major single-volume biography of Andrew Jackson in decades, H.W. Brands reshapes our understanding of this fascinating man, and of the Age of Democracy that he ushered in.
An orphan at a young age and without formal education or the family lineage of the Founding Fathers, Jackson showed that the Presidency was not the exclusive province of the wealthy and the well-born but could truly be held by a man of the people. On a majestic, sweeping scale Brands re-creates Jackson’s rise from his hardscrabble roots to his days as frontier lawyer, then on to his heroic victory in the Battle of New Orleans, and finally to the White House. Capturing Jackson’s outsized life and deep impact on American history, Brands also explores his controversial actions, from his unapologetic expansionism to the disgraceful Trail of Tears. This is a thrilling portrait, in full, of the president who defined American democracy."
Ahhh! Old Hickory! Despite my knowledge before reading this book, I found some events quite interesting and insightful.
Andrew Jackson: His Life and Times is not usual cup of tea. I thought it would be boring and endless by its amount of pages. I prefer biographies around four hundred pages. Not six or seven hundred. Or somewhere around there. Long biographies usually 'talk' too much for my liking.
Unlike my thoughts, Andrew Jackson: His Life and Times was entertaining and amusing while also being very serious, which makes the events of Andrew Jackson's life very amusing. (It goes around and around and around. A boomerang.) Andrew Jackson will not bored readers to death despite society's common beliefs.
Andrew Jackson: He's a fighter. A warrior. A patriot. One who will live, fight, and die for his country. He can never resist a call to help the US. He is whatever the US needs him to be. He is wherever the US needs him to be. He fought the Revolutionary War on the Rebel's side. He fought the War against Indians on the American's side. Wherever Andrew Jackson is, he is always on the American's side. He is a true patriot at heart. He puts duty and country first, above all. Above everything. Even his beloved wife, Rachel.
It's amazing how Andrew Jackson has two sides. The softer side and the harsher (Patriot) side. Anyway, why am I talking about Old Hickory? I should be talking about the writing of H.W. Brands, the author.
The writing was clear and smooth. It was easy to understand. I believe that a well educated fourth grader can read it with the help of a dictionary. I like the slight tone in the writing. Slight. You can barely feel it, but it's there.
Andrew Jackson is lost in the history of presidency. He's not lost in this history of money, however. (He's on the bill, hello?) It is nice to see someone talking about Andrew Jackson. These days all you hear about is Honest Abe and The Founding Father.
Talking about Honest Abe, I love the little paragraph at the end of the book about him. I found it fascinating and interesting. Poor Abe.
"With great power comes with great responsibility."- Uncle Ben, my favorite and only comic uncle
Rating: Four out of Five
(I know that this is unusual for me to write a review on biography, but I wrote one. KittiKat may also be including biographies' reviews.)