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Franklin and Winston: An Intimate Portrait of an Epic Friendship

por Jon Meacham

Outros autores: Ver a secção outros autores.

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1,2962010,912 (3.91)25
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER The most complete portrait ever drawn of the complex emotional connection between two of history's towering leaders Franklin Roosevelt and Winston Churchill were the greatest leaders of "the Greatest Generation." In Franklin and Winston, Jon Meacham explores the fascinating relationship between the two men who piloted the free world to victory in World War II. It was a crucial friendship, and a unique one--a president and a prime minister spending enormous amounts of time together (113 days during the war) and exchanging nearly two thousand messages. Amid cocktails, cigarettes, and cigars, they met, often secretly, in places as far-flung as Washington, Hyde Park, Casablanca, and Teheran, talking to each other of war, politics, the burden of command, their health, their wives, and their children. Born in the nineteenth century and molders of the twentieth and twenty-first, Roosevelt and Churchill had much in common. Sons of the elite, students of history, politicians of the first rank, they savored power. In their own time both men were underestimated, dismissed as arrogant, and faced skeptics and haters in their own nations--yet both magnificently rose to the central challenges of the twentieth century. Theirs was a kind of love story, with an emotional Churchill courting an elusive Roosevelt. The British prime minister, who rallied his nation in its darkest hour, standing alone against Adolf Hitler, was always somewhat insecure about his place in FDR's affections--which was the way Roosevelt wanted it. A man of secrets, FDR liked to keep people off balance, including his wife, Eleanor, his White House aides--and Winston Churchill. Confronting tyranny and terror, Roosevelt and Churchill built a victorious alliance amid cataclysmic events and occasionally conflicting interests. Franklin and Winston is also the story of their marriages and their families, two clans caught up in the most sweeping global conflict in history. Meacham's new sources--including unpublished letters of FDR' s great secret love, Lucy Mercer Rutherfurd, the papers of Pamela Churchill Harriman, and interviews with the few surviving people who were in FDR and Churchill's joint company--shed fresh light on the characters of both men as he engagingly chronicles the hours in which they decided the course of the struggle. Hitler brought them together; later in the war, they drifted apart, but even in the autumn of their alliance, the pull of affection was always there. Charting the personal drama behind the discussions of strategy and statecraft, Meacham has written the definitive account of the most remarkable friendship of the modern age.… (mais)
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In Franklin and Winston Jon Meacham has written a fascinating book about the friendship that developed between Roosevelt and Churchill through the conduct of World War II. Meacham's conversational style makes the book both entertaining and easy to read.

Meacham spends some time on the background of each leader, and on the events going on around them, but the focus is really on the relationship that developed between these two men. The positions their two nations found themselves in at the start of World War II, and the offices each man held in those nations, both helped shape their relationship. But Meacham makes it clear that both developed a fondness for the other that helped carry them through to the end - to Roosevelt's untimely death and Churchill being voted out of office.

Also helping shape the interplay between the two leaders was the role of the Soviet Union and Joseph Stalin as the third member of the Allied Powers, and Meacham's accounting of the three men at the conferences the "Big Three" held during the war is an interesting part of the story.

Anyone who has have recently read Erik Larson's The Splendid and the Vile will be familiar with many of the details covered in the first three chapters of this book (though Meacham did get there first - this book was originally published in 2003).

Both men were great leaders in trying times, inspiring their nations to come together and rise to meet difficult challenges. Both also were not perfect, but their nations were fortunate that what may have been seen as their flaws in other times were the strengths their nations needed in time of war.

I rate Franklin and Winston 4 Stars ⭐⭐⭐⭐ - I really liked the book and was glad I read it. I learned quite a bit from it. I recommend it. ( )
  stevrbee | Mar 17, 2021 |
5701. Franklin and Winston An Intimate Portrait of an Epic Friendship, by Jon Meacham (read 2 Aug 2030) Very readable and full of interet. It is clear that by 1945 FDR was worn out but before that he was an able and great president. ( )
  Schmerguls | Aug 18, 2020 |
It's an interesting read and I did pick up a bit more insight into the relationship FDR and Churchill. 40% of the pages are notes and bibliography. I'm getting used to that from Mr. Meacham. It is interesting to look through them but not tonight. It probably would have been a faster read but I mostly read it on a Kindle compatible tablet at lunch. It was easy to stop and then pick it up. ( )
  ulmannc | Oct 18, 2019 |
Excellent read, but it IS history. Meacham alternates short vignettes between Roosevelt and Churchill, highlighting the personal aspects of their interactions, ups and downs. Still, I get the feeling that there is much left out, especially re Eleanor's role. ( )
  rondoctor | Aug 31, 2018 |
Excerpts from my original GR review (Apr 2009):
- I thoroughly enjoyed this tremendous biography of a friendship, which turns out to be exceptional history too.
- Churchill...served as the suitor, and for clear reasons. First, Britain was in mighty desperate straits in 1940 and 41, literally holding back the pounding of the Nazi hammer from all sides, alone. Roosevelt hoped to keep America officially neutral, and not until Lend-Lease did the U.S. really take a tangible step to thwart Germany. Second, Roosevelt was a moody, somewhat stand-offish personality, much the opposite of the gregarious Churchill. FDR didn't know him at all and wasn't sure he would remain in power long.
- One of the highlights of the Anglo-American unification in our fight for freedom, as described in the book, was their meeting aboard a British ship at arms off Canada in the N Atlantic, a few days which truly cemented an intimate working relationship and proved a moving, spiritual, occasion for both men. Relations with Stalin...created a real strain in their personal comradery, but never really threatened it. About his "romancing" of FDR, Churchill said, to effect, "never has any lover minded the whims of his beloved more than did I Roosevelt". ( )
  ThoughtPolice | May 17, 2018 |
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"With its keen, nuanced analysis and sympathetic insight, Meacham's book makes for intense and compelling reading. His achievement is memorable, even considering the innate drama of his topic. His heroes are charismatic giants, paladins in a titanic struggle between good and evil, and masters of the English language and the theatric moment." Daniel Davidson, The Washington Post
 

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Full title (2003): Franklin and Winston : an intimate portrait of an epic friendship / Jon Meacham; 2004 UK edition has title: Franklin and Winston : a portrait of a friendship / Jon Meacham
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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER The most complete portrait ever drawn of the complex emotional connection between two of history's towering leaders Franklin Roosevelt and Winston Churchill were the greatest leaders of "the Greatest Generation." In Franklin and Winston, Jon Meacham explores the fascinating relationship between the two men who piloted the free world to victory in World War II. It was a crucial friendship, and a unique one--a president and a prime minister spending enormous amounts of time together (113 days during the war) and exchanging nearly two thousand messages. Amid cocktails, cigarettes, and cigars, they met, often secretly, in places as far-flung as Washington, Hyde Park, Casablanca, and Teheran, talking to each other of war, politics, the burden of command, their health, their wives, and their children. Born in the nineteenth century and molders of the twentieth and twenty-first, Roosevelt and Churchill had much in common. Sons of the elite, students of history, politicians of the first rank, they savored power. In their own time both men were underestimated, dismissed as arrogant, and faced skeptics and haters in their own nations--yet both magnificently rose to the central challenges of the twentieth century. Theirs was a kind of love story, with an emotional Churchill courting an elusive Roosevelt. The British prime minister, who rallied his nation in its darkest hour, standing alone against Adolf Hitler, was always somewhat insecure about his place in FDR's affections--which was the way Roosevelt wanted it. A man of secrets, FDR liked to keep people off balance, including his wife, Eleanor, his White House aides--and Winston Churchill. Confronting tyranny and terror, Roosevelt and Churchill built a victorious alliance amid cataclysmic events and occasionally conflicting interests. Franklin and Winston is also the story of their marriages and their families, two clans caught up in the most sweeping global conflict in history. Meacham's new sources--including unpublished letters of FDR' s great secret love, Lucy Mercer Rutherfurd, the papers of Pamela Churchill Harriman, and interviews with the few surviving people who were in FDR and Churchill's joint company--shed fresh light on the characters of both men as he engagingly chronicles the hours in which they decided the course of the struggle. Hitler brought them together; later in the war, they drifted apart, but even in the autumn of their alliance, the pull of affection was always there. Charting the personal drama behind the discussions of strategy and statecraft, Meacham has written the definitive account of the most remarkable friendship of the modern age.

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