Similar authors to follow
Manage your follows
About Jeff Shesol
Jeff Shesol is the author of "Supreme Power: Franklin Roosevelt vs. the Supreme Court" and "Mutual Contempt: Lyndon Johnson, Robert Kennedy, and the Feud That Defined a Decade." He was a speechwriter in the Clinton administration and lives in Washington, DC.
Customers Also Bought Items By
A riveting history of the epic orbital flight that put America back into the space race.
If the United States couldn’t catch up to the Soviets in space, how could it compete with them on Earth? That was the question facing John F. Kennedy at the height of the Cold War—a perilous time when the Soviet Union built the wall in Berlin, tested nuclear bombs more destructive than any in history, and beat the United States to every major milestone in space. The race to the heavens seemed a race for survival—and America was losing.
On February 20, 1962, when John Glenn blasted into orbit aboard Friendship 7, his mission was not only to circle the planet; it was to calm the fears of the free world and renew America’s sense of self-belief. Mercury Rising re-creates the tension and excitement of a flight that shifted the momentum of the space race and put the United States on the path to the moon. Drawing on new archival sources, personal interviews, and previously unpublished notes by Glenn himself, Mercury Rising reveals how the astronaut’s heroics lifted the nation’s hopes in what Kennedy called the "hour of maximum danger."
"A stunning work of history."—Doris Kearns Goodwin, author of No Ordinary Time and Team of Rivals
Beginning in 1935, the Supreme Court's conservative majority left much of FDR's agenda in ruins. The pillars of the New Deal fell in short succession. It was not just the New Deal but democracy itself that stood on trial. In February 1937, Roosevelt struck back with an audacious plan to expand the Court to fifteen justices—and to "pack" the new seats with liberals who shared his belief in a "living" Constitution.
"Mutual Contempt is at once a fascinating study in character and an illuminating meditation on the role character can play in shaping history."—Michiko Kakutani, New York Times
Lyndon Johnson and Robert Kennedy loathed each other. Their antagonism, propelled by clashing personalities, contrasting views, and a deep, abiding animosity, would drive them to a bitterness so deep that even civil conversation was often impossible. Played out against the backdrop of the turbulent 1960s, theirs was a monumental political battle that would shape federal policy, fracture the Democratic party, and have a lasting effect on the politics of our times. Drawing on previously unexamined recordings and documents, as well as memoirs, biographies, and scores of personal interviews, Jeff Shesol weaves the threads of this epic story into a compelling narrative that reflects the impact of LBJ and RFK's tumultuous relationship on politics, civil rights, the war on poverty, and the war in Vietnam. As Publishers Weekly noted, "This is indispensable reading for both experts on the period and newcomers to the history of that decade." "An exhaustive and fascinating history. . . . Shesol's grasp of the era's history is sure, his tale often entertaining, and his research awesome."—Russell Baker, New York Review of Books "Thorough, provocative. . . . The story assumes the dimensions of a great drama played out on a stage too vast to comprehend."—Jonathan Yardley, Washington Post (1997 Critic's Choice) "This is the most gripping political book of recent years."—Arthur Schlesinger, Jr. A New York Times Notable Book of the Year