Saturday, January 12, 2013

Washington: A Legacy of Leadership by Paul S. Vickery and Stephen Mansfield

As part of Thomas Nelson’s The Generals series about American military leaders, Washington takes the reader through the life of one of our first generals and our first commander-in-chief: George Washington.  Beginning with pre-Revolution events and leading up to his presidency, this book chronicles both the failures and triumphs of Washington, giving insight into the man we’ve heard so much about and yet know so little about.

To be honest, I haven’t really read much about George Washington since high school (with the exception of a book or two about the Revolutionary War).  And even what I remembered from then had turned into a caricature of the real Washington.  So I found this book to be refreshing because it took me back and gave me a more complete view of Washington than I had before, including insights into his faith.

I was especially interested to read about his life before the Revolutionary War, both in regards to his personal life and his military accomplishments (and defeats).  Knowing more about him before the War gave me a more concrete idea of who he was as he became involved in America’s struggle for independence, and thus makes the story all the more compelling.

I also enjoyed reading about how much of an influence Washington had on the way we run our government and military, and how his faith played an important role in how he understood every aspect of his life and the life of his country.

Overall, the insights into the personal life of Washington were the most interesting and the book was strongest when it emphasized those aspects, while not as engaging when it strayed away from those. I recommend this book to anyone wanting to whet their appetite for Washington, though for a more comprehensive treatment, there are surely other biographies that will better fit the bill.  However, for a concise look at Washington, and especially the role that his faith played in his life, this book does a good job.

I received this book free from the publisher through the book review bloggers program in exchange for my honest review.