Destiny of the Republic

Destiny of the Republic

A Tale of Madness, Medicine, and the Murder of A President

Audiobook CD - 2011 | Unabridged
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Candice Millard chronicles the life of President James A. Garfield, from his upbringing to his untimely death. Garfield's short time in office was devoted to cleaning up the corruption that was rife in a country still reeling from the Civil War. However, everything changed when Garfield was shot in the back by a disgruntled office worker. While the president's health slowly declined, a power struggle erupted over control of the administration, and the country's fate hung in the balance.
Publisher: New York, New York : Random House Audio, [2011], ℗2011
Edition: Unabridged
ISBN: 9780307939654
0307939650
9780525492849
0525492844
Branch Call Number: COMPACT DISC
Characteristics: 8 audio discs (9 hr., 48 min.) : digital, CD audio ; 4 3/4 in
Additional Contributors: Michael, Paul (Actor),- Narrator

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jandt_mcmurray
Jan 23, 2019

James Garfield, like many accomplished Americans, overcame multiple hurdles before reaching the achievement that would put him in the history books. He grew up the youngest child in humble home. His mother & older brother both saw the direction that James was headed, in the same underachieving way of his family. But James was proving to be quite the intellectual. His family would sacrifice much of their accumulated wealth to finance young Garfield's way into a prestigious school. His excellence in education as well as leadership quickly became apparent to those that would help to set him upon his path to greatest & the Presidency. Garfield did not seem to have an trouble wooing all those he came in contact with....perhaps not ALL. Charles Guiteau had lofty dreams of being a "somebody" in the modern-day political scene. He made connections with as many high society members as possible in order to rocket himself to political greatness. When when Garfield wouldn't meet with him or take his recommendations on his next steps in the office of the President, Guiteau "heard a revalation from God" --- to kill the President to make way for Chester Arthur to take his position. After some time of planning out the perfect assassination, Guiteau made his move & shot President Garfield while he was walking through a train station. Garfield stayed strong, & thanks to some of the greatest medical minds of the time, he rallied & lived for another couple of months. Despite the valiant efforts of all of those involved in the President's case, he would eventually pass away due to infection from the bullet wound. Guiteau would be tried for murder, found guilty, & hanged in public for all to witness. Even with the death of American's most hated man of the day, it did not seem as though justice had truly been served for the untimely passing of their beloved President.

I read a graphic novel (aka comic strip novel) based on the assassination of President Garfield. Admittedly I didn't know much about President Garfield prior to reading the above mentioned book, but the author laid out the events of the story in such a fascinating way that I knew I needed to read more on the subject. While discussing my thoughts on the graphic novel with a dear friend of mine, she was quick to recommend a book that she thought might satisfy my new-found curiosity on President Garfield & his assassination. As usual, her recommend was spot-on. Author Candice Millard offered ample insight into the event that rocked the nation in the late 19th century, & once again, the book led me into an even deeper desire to read more on the subject.

Age recommendation: 14 & up (graphic description of medical procedures, attempted murder)

On a scale of 1-10 stars, I give it 8.

j
jquick99
Sep 04, 2017

Loved this book. I am in awe of President Garfield.

Oh my. I cried at 4 different parts of his life/story.

Great storytelling and the person doing the audio did a fantastic job. I am very saddened Garfield has been completely forgotten about. And kept wondering why NO one has made a film about his life...especially a young actor who wants to shine in playing crazy Giteau (sp? Big time).

Highly recommend.

jwboyes Feb 21, 2013

Recommended by Steve Fulks

s
SuzeParker
Feb 15, 2013

What a pity that James Garfield's presidency was cut short. After reading Destiny of the Republic, it's clear that Garfield's fairmindedness and ability to forge consensus might have made him an outstanding president. Further, he seemed a genuinely good person, and I found myself liking him immensely. Destiny of the Republic is a very worthy telling of the too-short life of a man who, given more time, probably would have been great.

jeanpg Oct 01, 2012

Ditto kepicturewoman's comments; in addition, this book was far more interesting & suspenseful than I could have imagined; very well written!! Plan to read her earlier book forthwith!

k
kepicturewoman
Aug 04, 2012

I've been a member of the Garfield High School community since 1994, but never knew much about this President. Candice Millard has written an excellent book, intertwining biographical stories of President Garfield, his family and the man who decided to assassinate him. I could visualize as well as hear their words. She called upon correspondence, personal diaries and recollections of those who lived in that time. Added a new dimension to post Civil War America.

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jandt_mcmurray
Jan 23, 2019

jandt_mcmurray thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

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