Eleanor and Franklin
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Eleanor and Franklin

4.08 of 5 stars 4.08  ·  rating details  ·  911 ratings  ·  34 reviews
Eleanor and Franklin is one of the most highly acclaimed biographies written in recent times. Its author, Joseph Lash, won the Pulitzer and National Book Award in biography, as well as the Francis Parkman Prize of the Society of American Historians. Its focus is Eleanor Roosevelt and her complex relationship with FDR. Based on her personal papers and ranging from her birth...more
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Published January 1st 1973 by Signet (first published 1971)
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Susan Ozmore
Eleanor and Franklin cronicles the evolution of Eleanor Roosevelt from an insecure girl and young woman into a woman who would impact the lives of many, many people. When visiting US installations during WWII, more than once she heard soldiers cry out "Hey, there's Eleanor!" She radiated warmth and compassion with a down-to-earth style that made people feel like she belonged to them in some way. In many ways she did belong to them. She lived her life in service of others because she truly cared...more
Raymond
"Eleanor & Franklin" is an awesome achievement of interview, research and writing. Joseph Lash produced a tome which ever will be valued by scholars and historians. I think I have never read all of this giant book but I have read some chapters/parts two times, or three times.
Standing in front of Mt. Fuji and being disappointed. I have had that experience. My reaction to, "Eleanor & Franklin," is similar. Here is a Mt. Fuji of historical literature but I still do not know the actual inte...more
Gasuski Suski
I could not put this book down, you hear so much of the Franklin Presidency and now you learn so much of Eleanor. It has letters that she and Franklin wrote to each other. I love books that put you in the life of the character almost on a day to day basis. In the beginning of her life you would have never expected Eleanor to be such an important part of the presidency; which I don't know if that was bad or good. It was a corporate marriage as I would call it. My next goal is to read what her lif...more
Cathy
Magnificently written book about a magnificent woman. Eleanor Roosevelt combined her caring and compassionate heart, achieved through years of quiet suffering, and her brilliant intellect to be a woman for all people for all time. A very dense book with tiny font, at times it delved so deeply into the minutia of 1930s & 40s politics that I would break from it to read other books. That said, it's some of the most worthwhile reading I've ever done. This world could use another Eleanor to grace...more
Helen
After Eleanor Roosevelt's death, her children gave family friend Joseph Lash, who had already written a memoir on Eleanor, her private papers with the hopes that he could compile them into a book. An incredibly daunting task, and I applaud his efforts.

However, if you're going to call a book Eleanor and Franklin, and subtitle it with the claim that it's the story of their relationship, maybe you should begin with their relationship, and not with Eleanor's childhood. Sure, there was a lot of grea...more
Gina
This was a nice, readable biography, primarily of Elaenor Roosevelt. Ok, I'll admit I didn't quite finish it, but I got almost to the war. I was half way through the book when I realized it ended at Franklins death, which I found rather stunning and disappointing since she did so much after he died. I chose this biography because it had won the Pulitzer and was presumably reasonably accurate and well written, and because it was written by a family friend. I wasn't in the mood for a sensationaly,...more
Jean
I first read this book in the early 70s when I was your typical 20+-year old idealist and not political savvy. What I took away from the book was Eleanor's fight for equal rights for the black race and Franklin staying in the background because of the southern Democrats. Fast forward to now: I'm no longer the idealist. Because I'm older now, I found it so interesting to discover that the political fight back then very much parallels the arguments still used today. I still admire her but because...more
Amy
Eleanor Roosevelt was a mystery to me before this book--I just knew she was a go-getter first lady who helped shape our country. I didn't know she was Theodore Roosevelt's niece (she is Eleanor Roosevelt Roosevelt), she married her 2nd cousin, she was an orphan, she had a very difficult childhood, she was an insecure child, young bride and mother, she was bullied by her mother-in-law, and Franklin wasn't the ideal husband and she had absolutely no desire to be in the spotlight. Yet, through it a...more
Sus
Jan 02, 2010 Sus rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Sus by: dad
HOORAY! I FOUND THIS BOOK under the seat of my car! It wasn't even my children's fault! (Ahem.)

***

July 21, 2009 Update:
Book MISSING! I mean, where does a book go? I haven't seen it for weeks, nay, months! and would really like to get beyond the first chapter on this one... at this rate I may never never know anything about the Roosevelts.

***

I can't seem to make it through a book lately. Either the story is weak or the writing is... or maybe it's just me. So my dad being my dad trotted up to his...more
Ann
I read this "double" biography also a couple years ago. It is a very detailed and fascinating look into the lives of two of America's most famous/controversial people. The author does a good job of weaving the two stories together. The thing I found the most FASCINATING was both Roosevelts' initial admiration for Josef Stalin and the way they were so enamored with the whole Communist ideal. Many of the government programs that both promoted during their time in the White House were reflections...more
Luke
I learned so much reading this book! The author does a great job of bouncing around between history, politics, ethics, and common human experiences. You are left with a sense of awe at the person portrayed as Eleanor Roosevelt. She was a woman of incredible energy and conviction, and definitely had much to do with the success of her husband. And though the author was a personal friend of Mrs. Roosevelt, he still paints a realistic picture of her strengths and weaknesses as a person in this well-...more
David
Aug 05, 2010 David is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
More of an exhaustive history than an interpretive biography, it is nonetheless worth the effort. I picked it up to prepare for an upcoming weekend in Hyde Park, and the length - 900 pages in paperback! - means that I'll still be reading when I return. There's so much fascinating detail here about two figures so towering that it pulls you through the mechanical pace and academic tone. Still, I feel the same way I did when I somehow managed to outlast Robert Caro in the Power Broker: it's a pity...more
Ann
I read the first 200 pages or so, which gave a very detailed account of Eleanor's early life, including how she and Franklin fell in love (and yes, it was love!)

Eleanor was an amazing force, who triumphed over a miserable childhood and disappointing marriage to achieve great things. She is definitely worth reading about.

This particular book is based largely on correspondence. There are too many long quotes from letters for my taste, although I might continue with the book at some point. The par...more
Cynthia
Read many many years ago.
Janet Lira
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
aem
awesome book!
Kendall
I give it three stars because it is very long and sort of confusing/complex. I wish it would have talked more about what happened after FDR died, but then again it was more on Eleanor and Franklin, so I can understand. It was a pretty good book and cholk full of facts.

I actually didn't read the whole thing- I decided it was too long, so I skimmed through it. I think I'll re-check it out and actually read it. Its gotten pretty good reviews.
Graceann
Jun 30, 2009 Graceann marked it as unfinished-books
Shelves: biography
I hated to have to give up on this book. Joseph Lash's research is beyond reproach and he's a good writer. It's just not in a style that I am able to read, and I'm finding myself seeking any other thing to do rather than sink into it. It's a good book if you're the right reader for it; sadly I'm not the right reader.
RunRachelRun
My copy of "Eleanor & Franklin" is much better looking than this thumbnail. I say that because I admit that I have not bought books because the cover art was so repelling. I wouldn't have bought this book if it looked like the thumbnail. That said, if you come across this book, swallow hard and buy it. It's wonderful.
Michael Harris
Friends of the Hilton Head Library. One of many books I have read about these individuals. This one, from Eleanor's papers, provides more information to complete my picture of each of them.
ShareStories
I first watched the series on television during the 1970's, that was based on this book and I finally got around to reading the book itself. The series whetted my appetite for the Roosevelt era.
Monica
Oct 23, 2007 Monica marked it as for-biography-channel
Picked it up at Hyde Park. What kind of relationship was it? Not a great one from
what I gather from what has been left by history.
Nicole
I read this a while in college for a history class. It was so interesting to see the dynamics of the Roosevelt's realtionship.
Linda
A two volume book. I did not want to read SO MUCH about Eleanor and Franklin, but once I srart a project it must be finished.
Ange
remember reading it with a dictionary while I worked for my Washington bureau chiefs in D.C. next to the White House
Marian
Own 1st edition, showing SBN 393 07459 5, library of congress catalog card no. 72-162667.
Millicent
Jan 15, 2011 Millicent is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
a 700 page tome that i look forward taking to bed every night. the details are so delightful.
Daryl
detailed study of their relationship and the growth of the partnership between them
Susan
This book was inspiring. It gives you a sense of what lives well-lived should be like.
Cynthia
Loved reading this and still remember how I felt

still own this copy
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