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Eleanor vs. Ike: A Novel
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Eleanor vs. Ike: A Novel

3.48  ·  Rating details ·  182 Ratings  ·  43 Reviews
It is a time of turmoil, with the nation mired in an unpopular war in Korea and with Senator Joseph McCarthy stirring up fear of a lurking Communist "menace." Racial discrimination is rampant. A woman's place is in the home. And when a shocking act of God eliminates the Democratic presidential nominee, the party throws its support to an unlikely standard bearer: former Fir ...more
ebook, 352 pages
Published October 13th 2009 by HarperCollins e-books (first published January 1st 2008)
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Jamie
Having a hard time getting through this. It's been a few weeks and I'm only on chapter 5. I can't get into it...I am not drawn in by the way the author gives Eleanor Roosevelt voice. It seems like she is from 2008, not 1952. Not sure if I'm going to finish this one...
Peter
Sep 11, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Gerber takes the spirit of Hillary Clinton's 2007-08 campaign and plunks it smartly into the 1952 campaign, in the form of Eleanor Roosevelt. This is cotton candy for political junkies.
Douglas Graney
A fun read. If you know the history of that era it can be predictable but either way, you'll probably learn things about Eleanor Roosevelt you may not have known before.
Ken
May 19, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Seldom do I finish political fiction, but this one held my interest. Like all such, it is frustrating to deal with what is accurate and what is fiction. The author spent too much time on allegations of sexual affairs by Eleanor, FDR, and Ike. She simplified the policy differences between the parties in 1952 to race and socialism, and the candidate's gender, when there had to be many more issues. As in 2016, if one sees the presidential race as only the gender of the candidates, it ignores much. ...more
Yosef Shapiro
A plausible what if scenario. What if the Democratic Nominee for the 1952 Presidential election, Adlai Stevenson, died right after being nominated? Who would be his replacement? In this book, Eleanor Roosevelt runs against Eisenhower. There is also an appearance of a very young HRC.
Stuart Nachbar
Aug 25, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Historical Fiction Parallels Today’s Presidential Campaign Politics

My first attempt at fiction, The Sex Ed Chronicles, was based on historical events in my hometown and state, but it was a story of fictional characters. However, there are brilliant works of historical fiction that stay truer to history, when they use well-known historical figures in alternate scenarios.

Eleanor and Ike by Robin Gerber is one such work of fiction.

In Eleanor and Ike, the presidential race features no incumbent pres
...more
Dave
Oct 13, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Not unlike todays politicians, her leadership speaks of equality and fairness, retelling of past glories, and in her case recycling an old Deal as new. It's an era in which women contemplated their role in politics, yet Gerber dwells on bedfellows.

Gerber takes the reader back to 1952 and concocts a fantastical yarn in which Eleanor Roosevelt over comes bumbling fellow Democrats which allows her to win the party nomination. Then Roosevelt goes head to head against General Eisenhower, good ole Ike
...more
Angela
Sep 04, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone interested in politics, especially women's place in politics
I read this book the first time a few months ago - back when Clinton and Obama were still virtually neck and neck in the primaries. It's an extremely interesting, and powerful book. A few times the writing got to me in such a way that I had to put the book down to compose myself a little bit!

The great thing about this novel were the small details. Like a chance meeting between Eleanor and a young (Republican!) Hillary Rodham! On the flip side, the big detractor from the novel were the small deta
...more
Ronn
Jan 04, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
It's an interesting idea, having Eleanor Roosevelt running against Eisenhower in 1952, rather than Stevenson. It has been said that there are no wrong alternate histories, but only probable ones. This one, being somewhat slight, does not seem to rise to that level.

Conservatives, should they bother to read this book, would no doubt howl at they way events turn. And admittedly, the much-noted encounter with a 5-year-old Hillary Rodham is thoroughly gratuitous, but mercifully brief and is not a plo
...more
Sara G
I read this book for the A Book A Day Keeps the Boredom at Bay challenge. 4 – 4th of July is Independence Day. Read a book with a red, white and blue cover, or that is set on the US, or has the US flag on the cover. Or read a book where the main character is fighting for his independence or for some greater good.

This was an interesting book, but ultimately I feel like it was too predictable. The cameo appearance by a young Hillary Rodham felt too forced, and I feel like this writer was just tryi
...more
ShareStories
May 27, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this well-researched book.

In spite of my conservative, somewhat Republican leanings, I thoroughly enjoyed this work of (science?!?!)fiction.

The surprisingly believable premise is that Eleanor Roosevelt is drafted to run for President in 1952 when Adlai Stevenson drops dead on the convention floor. It is well researched and well written and a joy for anyone who enjoys the politics of the post-war era and/or the Roosevelts and their lives.

In the back of the book, are Gerber's no
...more
Alisa
Feb 06, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: beach-read
How would our world have been different if Eleanor Roosevelt had run against Ike in 1952? Would the KKK have grown its power in the 60's & 70s? Would Selma still have happened? Where would LGBT rights be today - would that have been a protected class from the beginning? Would the ERA have passed? Would we have ever elected JFK, much less allowed LBJ and Nixon to mire us further in Viet Nam? Fabulous book -- I couldn't put it down as my mind spun from the possibilities! Great narrative with g ...more
Yvonne
This book was our November book club selection. The overall feel from the group was that it made an interesting what if scenario, but it seemed to get bogged down by to much detail but not enough depth in the believability of the idea of Eleanor Roosevelt running against Eisenhower. There were some good discussions on politics of the time and present day. We did agree that Roosevelt and Clinton are both women you either love or you hate not much middle ground. It was also interesting to see what ...more
Almeda Riley
Apr 19, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction-i-liked
This is a fictional reconstruction of the presidential election of 1952, with Eleanor Roosevelt running against General Eisenhower. Necessary changes are made to the facts to set this up, but then the action and Gerber's knowledge of Mrs. Roosevelt and the political scene take over. The book is totally credible once you accept Eleanor as the candidate. it's suspenseful and interesting right up to the ending. I recommend it highly to any political junkie like me, or anyone who thinks Eleanor Roos ...more
Herb
This book had a good premise: what would have happened if Eleanor Roosevelt had thrown her hat into the political ring in 1952 and run fro president against Dwight D. Eisenhower? Of course, we all know that this never happened, but the idea was fascinating. Unfortunately for me, the whole thing never really gelled. There were also a few times when the author seemed to be writing with 21st century wordage. All together, not what I hoped for.
Vickie
Nov 06, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
ok this was an entertaining concept and I love anything about Eleanor Roosevelt. I vaguely remember when Ike was president and I certainly remember the way women were viewed. It (the story) could never have happened. Women lost their jobs just because a man could do it when the war ended.Homemaking was the be all and end all of life for most women. Trust me it could never happen but how sweet if it did.
Katie
Sep 05, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who enjoy historical fiction and who admire Eleanor Roosevelt.
This was a really good read - it started out a bit slow (the first few chapters), but then it picked up quickly and captured my attention. The author did a really good job of bringing real events to life and creating a plausible situation in which Eleanor would have run for president. I loved the back stories she shared - sordid affairs, seemingly happy marriages (that were mostly facades), and political conversations -- very great minor character development, as well.
Debbie
Oct 03, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: good-books
A 'what if' story - what if Eleanor Roosevelt ran against General Eisehhower for President of the United States in 1952? Based on historical facts (and some fictionalization!), this book covers the last several months of the presidential campaign of 1952. Eleanor Roosevelt is the first woman ever to run for national elective office - can she really win?
Heather
Apr 30, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, read-2008
The characters on Eleanor's team were a little too perfect and those on Ike's team too boorish. Some mistakes or foibles on Eleanor's part would have made the story more interesting.

That said, I started enjoying it more by the end and found myself staying up a bit late to see how it wrapped up.
Violet
You can learn quite a bit about Eleanor for this fiction book. I especially liked the end with the notes from the author. Didn't know that there were so many love affairs involved. Wouldn't it have been something if we actually had a women president back in the 50's.
Gloria
Jan 24, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It was good. It's a "what might have been" kind of story. Really enjoyed the politics and the historical facts (of course mixed with fictionalization). Eleanor is one of my faves. I think it lacked a little in the "emotional" aspect though; didn't really keep me hooked completely..
Elizabeth Black
I absolutely loved the premise of this book. And though I must admit it was not as good as I hoped, it was still an entertaining read. Ms. Gerber gets a big high-five for the idea and the willingness to ponder what might have been...
Marcia
Nov 05, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Enjoyed Eleanor Vs. Ike: a Novel, especially reading it just days before the 2012 presidential election. Apparently it was Robin Gerber's first novel written during the 2008 primary between H. Clinton and B. Obama. Glad the book fell off the library shelf for me. Timely and entertaining read.
Elisha (lishie)
Jan 29, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: historical fiction/political science lovers
A great idea & a timely topic- made for a great novel! I love how the book was written- using a lot of political events/speeches/clippings that actually happened and adding one huge fictional aspect- Eleanor Roosevelt running for President. What a great what if? historical fiction story!
Samantha
A decent book, but not one I would read over and over again.
Karen
Feb 26, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This wa sa great book and right in time for the current election season!
Ann
Feb 26, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Ann by: Dan
Excellent description of the political process in the 50's. At 12, I didn't know or understand all that was happening. A good look at Eleanor Roosevelt. I'm going to read more about her.
Rochelle
Dec 04, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another of my favorite genres, the "what if" novel. This was a real romp.
Melissa S
I thought it was too much political talk. And you really had to know your history to follow along completely. But it's not bad for a first attempt.
Sarah Witter
Dec 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Way more fiction than fact but a very fun read. Makes me want to read everything about Eleanor Roosevelt that I can find!
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