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818 pages, Paperback
First published April 26, 2004
If they break this Union, they will break my heart.~Alexander HamiltonIf anybody had told me a year ago that I would be delving into an 800 page biography on arguably America's least known Founding Father, first Secretary of the Treasury and he of ten dollar bill fame, I would have said they were crazy. But like so many people who will read this book in the coming years, it all started with a mad love affair for the Broadway musical. It's literally all I've been able to think about (or listen to) since April. It's consumed my waking hours in the oddest, most unpredictable, joyous of ways. Having now read Chernow's impressive, meticulously researched book, I am no longer surprised how it was able to inspire Lin-Manuel Miranda to write his extraordinary, beautiful, emotional, smart, searing, perfect musical (and that's all I'm going to say about the musical), because I really want this review to focus on Chernow's accomplishment and his fascinating subject -- Alexander Hamilton.
The Patriot of incorruptible Integrity
The Soldier of approved Valour
The Statesman of consummate Wisdom
Whose Talents and Virtues will be admired…
Long after this Marble shall have mouldered into Dust.