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NLS: Overseas Outlook

July through December 2004
Volume 27, Number 2

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The overseas librarian welcomes contributions from readers regarding interesting experiences, events, and humorous stories to include in the Overseas Outlook. Brief personal stories are preferred.

Minibibliography: Twentieth-Century Presidents of the United States

Each issue of Overseas Outlook includes a bibliography on a subject that may be of interest to our patrons. This issue features a minibibliography on the twentieth-century presidents of the United States. To receive any of the books on these presidents in this bibliography or books about other presidents, complete the order form at the end of the newsletter and return it to the overseas librarian.

Ambling into History: The Unlikely Odyssey of George W. Bush by Frank Brun     RC 54167 Journalist examines Bush's personal characteristics and qualities during his progress from Texas governor to United States president and recounts anecdotes from campaign coverage. Describes Bush's reactions to the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, that changed the tenor of his presidency. Bestseller. 2002.

At the Highest Levels: The Inside Story of the End of the Cold War     RC 36283
by Michael R. Beschloss and Strobe Talbott
A historian and a journalist chronicle the end of the Cold War. With unusual access to classified information, they describe the negotiations between George Bush and Mikhail Gorbachev from 1989 to 1991. Documents the two leaders' confirmation of diplomacy, fear, relative suspicion, and mutual trust that led to unprecedented changes. 1993.

Bill Clinton: An American Journey      RC 57118
by Nigel Hamilton
A chronicle of the life of Bill Clinton from his family background and childhood to his terms as president. Hamilton examines the highlights of Clinton's political career as well as the character flaws that undermined his successes. 2003.

Calvin Coolidge, the Quiet President      RC 31107
by Donald R. McCoy
McCoy's account of the thirtieth president emphasizes the person rather than the times. He describes Coolidge as a cautious, dependable, honest person who had self-confidence in his work and yet was, for a public figure, modest. Unfortunately Coolidge's rather cautious path, which led people to consider him a success for his time, has also made him a scapegoat for the Great Depression. 1990.

A Charge to Keep      RC 51903
by George W. Bush
Autobiography by George W. Bush written during his first campaign for president. Recalls his childhood in Texas, education, military service, business career, and political life. Describes his philosophy of "compassionate conservatism" and his hopes for the future. Bestseller. 1999.

The Conquerors: Roosevelt, Truman, and the Destruction of Hitler's Germany, 1941-1945      RC 55220
by Michael R. Beshloss
Historian relates the political dilemmas facing the Allies during World War II, including the future of conquered Germany. American Secretary of the Treasury Henry Morgenthau Jr. urged harsh punitive measures in retaliation for Nazi crimes against European Jews, while others sought rehabilitation and the establishment of democracy to prevent further German aggression. 2002.

The Crisis Years: Kennedy and Khrushchev, 1960-1963      RC 37869
by Michael R. Beschloss
Biographer chronologically follows the relationship between John Kennedy and Nikita Khrushchev through Kennedy's administration, concentrating on the major crises in Cuba and Berlin. Beschloss uses research sources not previously available to historians, including papers from the Kennedy Library and materials in the former Soviet Union. 1994.

The Dark Side of Camelot      RC 45157
by Seymour M. Hersh
This biography of John Fitzgerald Kennedy discusses how his upbringing and morals influenced his professional life. Citing Kennedy's indiscretions with various women, his liaisons with organized crime, and his use of violence as a political weapon, Hersh contends that the security of the country and the integrity of the presidency were threatened. Bestseller. 1998.

Dutch: A Memoir of Ronald Reagan      RC 48814
by Edmund Morris
Biographer Morris interjects himself as a fictional contemporary of Ronald Reagan in this authorized account of the fortieth president of the United States. He covers Reagan's life from his birth in Tampico, Illinois, through his college days, movie career, governorship of California, presidency, and final public appearance. 2001.

The Dying President: Franklin D. Roosevelt, 1944-1945      RC 47735
by Robert H. Ferrell
An account fo Franklin Roosevelt's performance as president during the last year of his life. Avers that he concealed serious health problems that impaired his ability to concentrate for long periods, which led to some unfortunate policy decisions toward the end of World War II. 1999.

Edith and Woodrow: The Wilson White House      RC 54666
by Phyllis Lee Levin
Former New York Times reporter discusses Edith Bolling Galt Wilson's role in running the country, especially after President Woodrow Wilson's 1919 stroke. Using formerly unavailable medical reports, White House memorandums, and internal documents, Levin shows how Edith made herself indispensable to her husband and destroyed his relationship with his friend and advisor Colonel Edward House. 2001.

Eisenhower      RC 49646
by Geoffrey Perret
This biography of President Dwight D. Eisenhower covers his childhood, military career, and years in public office. Uses primary sources such as diaries and letters to document Eisenhower's personal and professional life. Chronicles the postwar events of the McCarthy era, the civil rights movement, and military actions in Korea and Vietnam. 1999.

Eisenhower Volume I: Soldier, General of the Army, President Elect, 1890-1952;   RC 21174;       Volume II: The President;  RC 22304
by Stephen E. Ambrose
A balanced human portrait that covers Eisenhower's two terms as president, retirement, and death in 1969. Although he did not disavow Senator McCarthy and was negative on civil rights, Eisenhower was in full control of the presidency during eight years of peace and prosperity. 1985.

FDR: A Biography      RC 23836
by Ted Morgan
Admirable portrait of the nation's thirty-second president and only four- term leader. Morgan analyzes the forces that shaped this master politician who, at thirty-nine, was struck by polio leaving his legs permanently paralyzed. The author believes that the ordeal gave FDR a new vision and awareness of people. 1986.

FDR: An Intimate History      RC 19265
by Nathan Miller
Recounts inspiring story of the charismatic thirty-second president. Relates his mother-dominated but happy childhood; his education at Groton, Harvard, and Columbia; and his service as assistant secretary of the navy, governor of New York, and president. Emphasizes Roosevelt's personality and its effect on others. 1983.

FDR's Splendid Deception      RC 23469
by Hugh Gregory Gallagher
Examines the life of President Franklin Roosevelt as a paraplegic victim of polio and reveals how Roosevelt's intense efforts to conceal or minimize his disability influenced his personal and political activities. 1985.

First in His Class: A Biography of Bill Clinton      RC 40458
by David Maraniss
Recounts the life of the president from his hardscrabble childhood to the day he declared for the presidency. Drawing on interviews, research, and analysis, Maraniss traces Clinton's path through school and his Arkansas political career, noting his character development along the way. The author's goal: an "examination of a complicated human being and the forces that shaped him and his generation." 1995.

First Son: George W. Bush and the Bush Family Dynasty      RC 49428
by Bill Minutaglio
Offers in-depth look at the 2000 Republican presidential candidate. Draws upon hundreds of interviews in tracing the Texas governor's education at elite New England schools, his "nomadic" years in the Texas oil fields, and his later political career. Discusses various personal traits, interests, and shortcomings of George W. 1999.

Flawed Giant: Lyndon Johnson and His Times, 1961-1973      RC 47275
by Robert Dallek
This sequel to Lone Star Rising (RC 34378) concludes a two-volume biography of President Lyndon B. Johnson, whose ambitious domestic agenda became overshadowed by America's deepening military involvement in Vietnam. Depicts a troubled and enigmatic leader struggling to manage a failing war policy. 1999.

General Ike: A Personal Reminiscence      RC 56762
by John S.D. Eisenhower
The son of General Dwight D. Eisenhower draws on his own observations and research as a military historian to describe his father's relationships with World War II associates. Essays portray Ike's interactions with George Patton, Bernard Montgomery, Douglas MacArthur, George C. Marshall, Charles de Gaulle, and Winston Churchill, among others. 2003.

George Bush: The Life of a Lone Star Yankee      RC 48100
by Herbert S. Parmet
Depicts George Bush as the president who led the United States through the end of the cold war. Traces his youth in New England; service in the navy; years at Yale; and careers as oilman, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, CIA director, vice president, and forty-first president. 2000.

Grace and Power: The Private World of the Kennedy White House      RC 58448
by Sally Bedell Smith
Biographer's portrait of Jack and Jackie Kennedy during their three years as president and first lady. Uses previously unavailable personal papers and interviews with the Kennedy inner circle to recreate the couple's marriage, friendships, and political associations. Discusses Jack's extramarital affairs and revisits the days surrounding his assassination. 2004.

In the Day of McKinley      RC 14507
by Margaret Leech
Biography of the twenty-fifth president of the United States traces his personal and political life to the time of his assassination in 1901. 1979.

James E. Carter, Thirty-ninth President of the United States      RC 30139
by Daniel A. Richman
Biography presents Jimmy Carter's life beginning with his birth in 1924 in Plains, Georgia, and childhood on a 350-acre farm. Discusses his childhood dream to attend the U.S. Naval Academy, his becoming an officer upon graduation, and service as an aide to Admiral Rickover. Relates his return to Plains upon his father's death and his rise to the presidency. 1990.

Keeping Faith: Memoirs of a President      RC 18686
by Jimmy Carter
The thirty-ninth President of the United States offers his impressions of life in the White House, the crises that confronted him, and the people who worked intimately with or against him. He also tells, with feeling, of his relationship with his wife, Rosalynn. 1982.

The Life of Herbert Hoover, Volume I: The Engineer, 1874-1914      RC 29662
by George H. Nash
This first volume of a multipart series covers the life of Hoover up to the age of forty. Nash writes briefly of Hoover's orphaned boyhood and his years at Stanford and addresses most of his account to Hoover's work in mining operations in Western Australia and China. He covers the years when Hoover began to turn toward a desire for public service. 1989.

The Life of Herbert Hoover, Volume II: The Humanitarian, 1914-1917      RC 29631
by George H. Nash
In this second volume of a multipart series on Hoover's life, Nash covers the years during World War I when Hoover was in charge of relief work in Europe. Asserts that here Hoover showed the skill as an administrator that prepared him for his future role as president. 1989.

Lone Star Rising: Lyndon Johnson and His Times, 1908-1960      RC 34378
by Robert Dallek
This is the first of a two-volume biography by a historian who researched original sources for seven years. Dallek finds much about the former president's character to be offensive. Nevertheless, he focuses on the importance and impact of Johnson's achievements, such as civil rights legislation, weighing them against his liabilities. Companion to Flawed Giant (RC 47275). 1992.

Lyndon: An Oral Biography      RC 16412
by Merle Miller
Biography of the thirty-sixth president of the United States, Lyndon Baines Johnson, from his birth in Stonewall, Texas, during a stormy night, to his sudden and solitary death there of a heart attack in 1973. A portrait as seen by his family, friends, and enemies of the reluctant vice president and the unexpected president. Bestseller. 1981.

Master of the Senate: The Years of Lyndon Johnson      RC 54174
by Robert A. Caro
The third volume of a biographical study of the thirty-sixth president, following The Path of Power (RC 18676) and Means of Ascent (RC 30837). Explains how Johnson, elected to the U.S. Senate in 1949, mastered the legislative system and maneuvered himself into the vice- presidency in 1960. 2002.

Means of Ascent      RC 30837
by Robert A. Caro
The second installment in Caro's biography of Lyndon Johnson focuses on his brief military service, his acquisitions of wealth through his Austin radio station (KTBC), and the 1948 election, won by only eighty- seven votes, which sent Johnson to the U.S. Senate and changed history. Sequel to The Path to Power (RC 18676).

Memoirs of Harry S. Truman, Volume One: Year of Decisions      RC 30020
by Harry S. Truman
Truman wrote of his time in the White House shortly after leaving office. In this first volume of a two-volume work, he covers the year 1945, in which the country saw the death of Roosevelt, the conferences at Yalta and Potsdam, the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and the establishment of the United Nations. 1990.

Memoirs of Harry S. Truman, Volume Two: Years of Trial and Hope      RC 30021
by Harry S. Truman
Truman wrote of his time in the White House shortly after leaving office. In the final volume of a two-volume work, he covers the years 1946- 1952, including such topics as the Berlin airlift and the Chinese revolution and such personalities as Marshall, MacArthur, Chiang Kai- Shek, and Dewey. 1990.

The Memoirs of Richard Nixon      RC 11756
by Richard M. Nixon
Autobiography of the thirty-seventh president of the United States includes recollections from a rural California boyhood to his resignation and departure from the White House. Provides insight into the complexities of the modern presidency. 1978.

Mornings on Horseback      RC 16977
by David McCullough
Biography of the young Teddy Roosevelt. Relates Roosevelt's childhood, education, early political career, the personal tragedy of losing his young wife, and life at the Dakota ranch to which he retreated after his candidate lost the Republican presidential nomination in 1882. Using private Roosevelt family papers McCullough illustrates the closeness of their family life. Bestseller. 1981.

My Life      RC 58100
by Bill Clinton
Detailed autobiography of William Jefferson Clinton, forty-second American president. 2004.

The Natural: The Misunderstood Presidency of Bill Clinton      RC 54028
by Joe Klein
Political analyst and author of bestselling Primary Colors (RC 41822) reassesses Clinton's presidency. Argues that despite personal failings, Clinton ran a "serious, disciplined, responsible presidency," with lasting effects on the economy and on the American people. Klein examines the historical record and attempts to put it into perspective. 2002.

Nixon: The Education of a Politician, 1913-1962      RC 26109
by Stephen E. Ambrose
First volume of a two-volume biography covers Nixon's life from birth to his unsuccessful 1962 run for the governorship of California. A discerning work that exposes the contradictions and the depths of Richard Nixon. 1987.

Nixon, Volume 2: The Triumph of a Politician, 1962-1972      RC 31418
by Stephen E. Ambrose
Covers Nixon from his defeat in the 1962 California gubernatorial race to his 1972 re-election as president of the United States. Ambrose depicts Nixon as the "ultimate cynic, a president without principle in domestic politics," and "the ultimate realist, a president without peer in foreign affairs." Sequel to Nixon: The Education of a Politician, 1913- 1962 (RC 26109) 1991.

Nixon, Volume 3: Ruin and Recovery, 1973-1990      RC 35772
by Stephen E. Ambrose
Discusses the Watergate scandal and the former president's roles as author and elder statesman. Ambrose traces Nixon's struggle to extricate himself from the wrongdoings of his reelection campaign, and shows how following his resignation Nixon orchestrated his life in an attempt to regain respect in history. Sequel to Nixon: The Triumph of a Politician, 1962-1972 (RC 31418). 1993.

No Ordinary Time: Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt; the Home Front in World War II      RC 39154
by Doris Kearns Goodwin
A portrait of the president and the first lady during World War II. Based on Goodwin's examination of the Roosevelts' papers, and interviews with their friends and family, she analyzes the Roosevelts' adversities, achievements, and leadership from interrelated political, social, intellectual, and personal perspectives. 1995.

The Path to Power      RC 18676
by Robert A. Caro
The first part of a three-part political biography. This monumental volume recreates the early life of the thirty-sixth president assembling innumerable anecdotes about his childhood, college years, and early political career to reveal the ruthlessness and complexity of his forceful personality. The author immersed himself for seven years in Johnson's life in order to portray his Texas, his Washington, and his America. 1982.

The Politician: The Life and Times of Lyndon Johnson; the Drive for Power; from the Frontier to Master of the Senate      RC 18422
by Ronnie Dugger
A veteran Texas journalist defines the fifty-year "Johnson Period." A critical biography, portraying Johnson, not only as an energetic politician convinced of his ability to do good, but also as a power-hungry man willing to sacrifice principles to further his political career. 1983.

President Kennedy: Profile of Power      RC 37423
by Richard Reeves
Examines President Kennedy's use of power from the day before his inauguration in January 1961 until the day of his assassination in November 1963. Based on previously unavailable records, Reeves's account gives the reader a behind-the-scenes look at the presidency and at Kennedy's responses to crises at home and abroad. 1994.

President Nixon: Alone in the White House      RC 55252
by Richard Reeves
Through the examination of papers and tapes declassified long after Nixon's death, Reeves reveals the insular, deceptive nature of Nixon's presidency, which lasted from 1969 to 1974. Documents what Nixon experienced in the White House, what he knew, and what he actually did, "sometimes hour by hour, sometimes minute by minute." 2001.

Question of Character: A Life of John F. Kennedy      RC 33026
by Thomas C. Reeves
The author, a history professor specializing in twentieth-century American politics and religion, sheds new light on discrepancies between the public life and private behavior of Kennedy. Several years of research resulted in Reeves's belief that Kennedy's family, school, and military experiences created his apparent indifference to the values of integrity, compassion, and self-control. 1991.

Reagan      RC 17750
by Lou Cannon
"I like and respect Ronald Reagan while remaining skeptical that his actions will achieve the results he intends." Expressing these sentiments in the foreword, Cannon, veteran White House correspondent for the Washington Post, offers a critical though sympathetic assessment of the life and career of our fortieth president. Bestseller. 1982.

Reagan's America: Innocents at Home      RC 25962
by Garry Wills
Critic, observer, and commentator Wills weaves two narratives into this interpretive biography of Ronald Reagan. In addition to tracing the president's career, Wills investigates American society as it developed over Reagan's life span. How the character and spirit of our fortieth president embody these changes is at the core of this social and political analysis. 1987.

Richard M. Nixon: Thirty-seventh President of the United States      RC 30137
by Rebecca Stefoff
Follows Richard Nixon's life from his birth into a working-class Quaker family in California on January 9, 1913, as the second of five sons. Describes Nixon as an excellent, hardworking student. Relates his political career after returning from World War II in 1946 to his election as president in 1968, reelection in 1972, and resignation from office. 1991. Theodore Rex      RC 53306
by Edmund Morris
The sequel to The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt (RC 14168) concentrates on TR's two terms of office as president following the assassination of William McKinley in 1901. Discusses Roosevelt's major achievements, including a Nobel Peace Prize, the Panama Canal Treaty, and enduring antitrust and conservation legislation. Bestseller. 2001.

Time and Chance: Gerald Ford's Appointment with History      RC 39293
by James Cannon
Cannon, who conducted nearly 200 interviews and had full access to Gerald Ford's papers, offers a brief account of Ford's childhood and early political career. But most of his study is devoted to the years between 1968 and 1976, when Ford's rise to fame began to coincide with President Nixon's decline. Cannon examines the events that led to the Watergate scandal, Nixon's resignation, and Ford's decision to pardon Nixon. 1995.

A Time to Heal: The Autobiography of Gerald Ford      RC 13829
by Gerald Ford
Former President Ford discusses his early years and family life, his climb to the presidency, and the import of his controversial decision to pardon Richard Nixon. 1979.

Truman      RC 34820
by David McCullough
A monumental study of the life and times of the plainspoken, plain- looking, "ordinary" man from Missouri who became an extraordinary president. McCullough details Truman's accomplishments as a politician and a statesman, as well as his failings and his lack of sophistication. The author recreates the famous 1948 presidential election, which he calls Truman's finest hour. 1993.

Truman: A Centenary Remembrance      RC 21275
by Robert H. Ferrell
Biography written in honor of the centenary of the birth of Harry S. Truman, thirty-third president of the United States. Recounts the life and career of Truman as a farmer, soldier, haberdasher, judge, senator, vice- president, and finally president. Recounts how Truman, as president, irrevocably set America on its present course of world leadership. 1985. An Uncommon Man: The Triumph of Herbert Hoover      RC 21742
by Richard Norton Smith
Focuses on Hoover's life after the presidency, from his bitter exit in 1933 through his years of obsession with FDR. Tells of his forlorn hope for vindication and of his renewed composure after Roosevelt's death. Gives an account of Hoover's war-relief and government reorganization activities. 1985.

An Unfinished Life: John F. Kennedy 1917-1963      RC 56246
by Robert Dallek
This portrait of the former president emphasizes the virtues and faults that made him "seem both exceptional and ordinary." Source materials shed light on JFK's lifelong health problems, family influences on his character, philandering, navy service record, congressional terms, and presidential policies. 2003.

The Unfinished Presidency: Jimmy Carter's Journey beyond the White House      RC 47796
by Douglas Brinkley
Explores Jimmy Carter's continuing work with programs and policies he espoused while in the White House and after. Explains his efforts in human rights, peace, democracy, and health as themes in his post- presidential work. Depicts his involvement with Habitat for Humanity and the Atlanta Project. 2000.

Warren G. Harding, Twenty-ninth President of the United States      RC 30129
by Anne Canadeo
Presents Warren Harding's childhood in the 1860's near Blooming Grove, Ohio, when he was the eldest of eight children and his father was a physician. Discusses his election to the presidency in 1920, the Teapot Dome scandal that embittered his last days, and his death in 1923. For grades 5-8 and older readers. 1991.

When Character Was King: A Story of Ronald Reagan      RC 53364
by Peggy Noonan
Former special assistant to president Ronald Reagan asserts that his greatness lay in his character. Includes anecdotes from those who knew the president well; analyzes his career as a film star, a union representative, and a politician; and discusses the factors that influenced him. 2001.

When the Cheering Stopped: The Last Years of Woodrow Wilson      RC 53360
by Gene Smith
Details the last months of U.S. president Woodrow Wilson's second term in office (1919-1921), when he was physically incapacitated and isolated from others by his physician and second wife, Edith. Discusses how his forced retreat from political life undermined America's full support for the League of Nations. Covers the Wilsons' retirement in Washington. 1964. William H. Taft, Twenty-seventh President of the United States      RC 30127
by Lucille Falkof
Presents William Howard Taft's life beginning with his 1850's childhood in Cincinnati, Ohio. Discusses how like his grandfather, he chose law as a profession. Covers his election to the presidency in 1908, time as a law professor at Yale, and appointment as chief justice of the Supreme Court in 1921. For grades 5-8 and older readers. 1991.

William McKinley: Twenty-fifth President of the United States      RC 30125
by David R. Collins
Describes life of President William McKinley beginning with his birth in 1843 in Niles, Ohio, as the seventh child of Nancy Allison McKinley and William McKinley Sr. Recounts his service in the Union Army during the Civil War, his clerkship in a law office and admittance to the Ohio bar in 1867. Discusses his election to the presidency in 1896, reelection in 1900, and assassination in 1901. 1991.

Woodrow Wilson      RC 35502
by August Heckscher
A biography of the twenty-eighth president of the United States by a former president of the Woodrow Wilson Foundation and editor of the Wilson papers. The author traces Wilson's academic life as a political- science professor and university president, followed by his political career as a governor and as the chief executive. Heckscher discusses Wilson's failure to act on his opposition to racial segregation and his crusade for entry into the League of Nations. 1993.

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Posted on 2006-02-24