American Creation by Joseph J. Ellis

General Description (From Bookmarks Magazine)

Reviewers embraced American Creation for the same reason they enjoyed Ellis’s previous books: his treatment of the Founding Fathers is neither idolatrous nor iconoclastic. He portrays them as the fascinating, complex, and human characters they really were. Some historians disagreed with details of Ellis’s interpretation, but they tended to emphasize that, like the founders themselves, Ellis has created a useful framework in which the ideas of the Revolutionary period can be discussed. Ellis’s prose, on the other hand, did not inspire any comparisons with Thomas Jefferson’s; in fact, several reviewers suggested another round of editing. But all critics agreed that the author’s masterful handling of the material checked and balanced the occasional tyrannical sentence.
Copyright © 2004 Phillips & Nelson Media, Inc.

Why the President Should Read It

This is not the book the President should read to learn about the Founding, but rather a book. While it is one of the better books chronicling the events comprising the beginning of the United States, no one book can get the job done. If you’re going to read 10 books about the Founding, this should be one of them. If you’re only going to read 5, then maybe, maybe not. I would hope that anyone elected to be our President would have read at least 20 books on the Founding prior to assuming the office.

Personal Notes
It’s funny, I started reading it and found it too boring and gave up. A few weeks later, I started again and loved it. So I guess I just wasn’t in the right mood the first time.

Very much a summary, I enjoyed it for that reason, because it’s a high-level view of the people, places, events, and ideas that formed the United States and how they acted together. All in all, a good history with many interesting details I wasn’t completely familiar with.