Scholarly, informative, well-written.,
This review is from: President Nixon: Alone in the White House (Hardcover)An astounding amount of research went into producing this very informative book. Richard Reeves has given us a detailed view of the Nixon presidency starting with the first inauguration in January, 1969. Oddly, except for a very brief epilogue, the book ends in April, 1973 with the resignations of Haldeman and Erlichman. This despite the fact that Nixon would remain in office more than 15 additional months before resigning himself.
President Nixon: Alone in the White House consists of a chronological compilations of events occuring during Nixon's tumultuous tenure.
The well documented facts presented in this book leave the reader with the following impressions:
On the positive side. Nixon was an extremely knowledgeable politician with a very sophisticated understanding of geopolitics. He had a clearly defined vision of America's place in the world and was not afraid to take bold steps to enhance the country's position of power on the world stage.
On the negative side. Nixon, the individual, was petty, vindictive, distrustful and self delusional. He was very much a loner who spent an inordinate amount of time by himself. As chief of staff, Haldeman's primary function was to prevent Congressional leaders, Cabinet members and White House staff from getting in to see Nixon. It appears that the only adviser who had unfettered access was Henry Kissinger. Furthermore, in the Nixon White House, there was no need for the likes of Karl Rove or Karen Hughes. When it came to public relations and building up the President's image, Nixon handled all of that himself, in microscopic detail. And we find in Nixon a man whose moral compass was more than slightly askew. The Watergate break-in, which ultimately led to his downfall, was only one of a number of illegal or unethical acts sanctioned by Nixon to gain advantage over his political enemies.
President Nixon: Alone in the White House is a valuable resource for understanding the Nixon presidency. Anyone reading this book, no matter what their level of knowledge about Nixon might be, will be guaranteed to learn new things about this fascinating, enigmatic figure.