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This is a Gem!, April 3 2003
I picked up a used copy of Grant Speaks while I was traveling, and I was quite happy that I did! Ehrlich does a great job of getting at something deeper through the life of one of our more troubled Presidents.
While I don't take to heart Ehrlich's characterizations of some historical figures in this book, I feel he may have gotten more at the root of what some of the people, such as Grant, may have been going through as they struggled through their lives. I've read other historic fiction books, and frankly I've been disappointed. The tendancy to write a biography with dashes of created conversations is easy to fall into, and unfortunately many of Ehrlich's peers are trapped by their own need to be utterly faithful to history. The point of fiction is to explore what we do not know. I have quibbles with parts of the book, but as for creativity Ehrlich hits a home run.
Especially now, while the US is at war, this book becomes a poignant look at what it means to be an American. I recommend it highly!