Media Center: Robert A. Caro Publishes Book Four of Lyndon Johnson Biography
Robert A. Caro
THE PASSAGE OF POWER
The Years of Lyndon Johnson
Published by Knopf May 1, 2012
“Riveting from beginning to end…Unquestionably, one of the truly big books of year.
“Wedged between LBJ’s triumphant Senate career and his presidency, this fourth volume in Caro’s acclaimed series addresses the failed presidential campaign of 1960, the three frustrating years as vice president, and the transition between the Kennedy and Johnson administrations.
“The book is riveting reading from beginning to end, perhaps because Caro’s real subject is political power, both its waxing and waning. There is plenty of both here, as Caro shows Johnson struggling with his lifetime fear of being humiliated, first in the brilliant account of his mystifying refusal to enter the 1960 campaign before it was too late to win and then in the agonizing story of the vice-presidential years.
“But the real tour de force in this stunning mix of political and psychological analysis comes in the account of the transition between administrations, from November 23, 1963, to January 8, 1964, when Johnson delivered his first State of the Union message. From the moment he assumed the presidency, on Air Force One with Jackie Kennedy at his side, Johnson, as Caro portrays him, was a man reborn.
“It is an utterly fascinating character study, brimming with delicious insider stories. Political wonks, of course, will dive into this book with unbridled passion, but its focus on a larger-than-life, flawed but fascinating individual—the kind of character who drives epic fiction —should extend its reach much, much further.” —Bill Ott, BOOKLIST (starred review)
“One of the most anticipated English-language biographies of the past 30 years…it will thrill those who care about American politics and the foundations of power.”—KIRKUS (starred review)
“A major event in biography,
history, even publishing itself.
Caro has once more combined prodigious research and a literary gift to mount a stage for his Shakespearean figures: LBJ, JFK and LBJ’s nemesis Robert F. Kennedy.”
—Bob Nardini, LIBRARY JOURNAL (starred review)
“Magisterial…a roller-coaster narrative.”—PUBLISHERS WEEKLY (starred review)
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