Jennie: Eisenhower

Eisenhower: The White House Years by Jim Newton

Okay, I’ll admit that Eisenhower isn’t my favorite president. Not for anything he did specifically politically, but because upon winning the election, when Truman offered Ike the globe that Ike had given him as a gift during wartime, Ike refused it. That globe had brought Truman a lot of comfort during the War and he was doing it as a symbolical gesture of somewhat friendliness. But Ike refused. That gave me a sour taste. Yes, I’m certain it has a lot to do with my Missouri-girl-Truman-bias, but whatever.

I selected this book because it was a bargain book at B&N or HPB in the past year, so I snatched it up even though I was a ways off from needing it. I’m glad I read a smaller book for this president, because after the huge FDR and Truman biographies, I was needing a month with a slightly lighter reading challenge!

This biography had a few chapters of Ike’s early life and years climbing the military ladder, which was fascinating and heartbreaking. The sections of him losing his son made me cry, not only was the text written emotionally, but Ike’s response was a tear-jerker too. His time in the White House was fascinating, highlighting many situations I didn’t know had occurred.

I finished this one with a slightly better opinion of Ike than when I started. However, his legacy to me is still tainted by the globe incident. As far as writing, this book wasn’t dry or boring or even slanted. I felt it was a well-rounded look at Eisenhower’s presidency. I recommend it!