The Accidental President by A.J. Baime

The Accidental President

The dramatic, pulse-pounding story of Harry Truman’s first four months in office, when this unlikely, small-town Washington outsider had to take on Germany, Japan, Stalin, and the atomic bomb, with the fate of the world hanging in the balance.Heroes are often defined as ordinary characters who get thrust into extraordinary circumstances, and through courage and a dash of luck, cement their place in history. Chosen as FDR’s fourth-term vice pr...

Details The Accidental President

TitleThe Accidental President
Release DateNov 7th, 2017
PublisherHoughton Mifflin Harcourt
GenreHistory, Nonfiction, Biography, Politics, North American Hi..., American History, War, World War II, Presidents

Reviews The Accidental President

  • Jean Poulos
    I have read many biographies about Harry S. Truman (1884-1972). In this book A. J. Baime narrows the scope of the book to the first four months of the presidency. The author does provide some early history of Truman so the reader understands how events came about.On April 12, 1945, Eleanor Roosevelt summoned Truman to the White House to inform him of the death of FDR. Truman said his worst nightmare immediately became a reality. He had only been ...
  • Nancy
    "Never had fate shoehorned so much history into such a short period." The Accidental President, A. J. BaimeHis first response was "No." Truman did not want the position of President Franklin D. Roosevelt's new Vice President.But FDR commanded it, and Harry S. Truman had to agree.FDR was not a well man when he took office for a fourth term. And when he died on April 12, 1945, Truman said, "the whole weight of the moon and stars fell on me.""Who th...
  • Emily Ross
    Thank you to the publishers for providing an ARC of this book through NetGalley.This was a brilliant biography of Truman, concerning the first four months of his presidency. It briefly covers a few months prior to Roosevelt’s death, so we understand how Truman came to make the decisions he did, and goes into depth concerning the war with Germany and the war with Japan, the Manhattan Project, the formation of the United Nations, Europe’s strug...
  • Italo Italophiles
    This is a popularized history book about Harry Truman and the tumultuous first four months of his presidency. There was a lot more about Truman's history than I expected, stopping in its tracks the story of the first four months, but the background was helpful to get a measure of the man. Truman, a self-educated man who grew up in poverty, had some redeeming characteristics, such as his work ethic and his respect for knowledge and fact: “There ...
  • Bigmg
    Right Man, Right TimeHarry S Truman has been one of the most forgotten presidents of the 20th Century. Standing in the shadow of FDR, it's easy to see why. But my cynicism of FDR is well founded, especially when in his 4th term the events of his hapless arrogance threw this nobody from Independence, MO. into what under his leadership became the most powerful position in the wold.To think that it was Truman who led America into the position as the...
  • John Plowright
    Albert Baime’s ‘The Accidental President’ is a portrait of Truman during the first four months of his administration, from FDR’s death on 12 April 1945 until 14 August 1945, when Japan’s surrender was made public. The book is dedicated to the author’s father “who … kept a portrait of Harry S. Truman on his office wall for more than forty years”, and it is soon evident that the younger Baime shares his father’s admiration of th...
  • Jill Meyer
    It is not until April 25, 1945 (or page 167 of A.J. Baime's "The Accidental President), that newly inaugurated president Harry Truman was told about the US development of the atomic bomb. That was nearly two weeks after Truman succeeded Franklin Roosevelt, who had died on April 12th. (I'm not exactly sure, but I think the Soviets may have known about the bomb before Truman did because of the spying done at Los Alamos.) Why hadn't Truman, who had ...
  • Steve
    The first book I can recall about reading about Harry Truman, And so far the best book I have read on the subject matter. Harry Truman was the Vice President of Franklin Roosevelt, Truman took over the office of President of the United States when Roosevelt died on April 12, 1945 in Warm Springs, Georgia. Harry Truman was thrust into the presidency during the last four months of World War II and had big shoes to fill. the final events of World Wa...
  • Brian Williams
    I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It’s a readable account of the initial several months of the Truman presidency, from April 1945 through to the Japanese surrender in September 1945. It’s scholarly without being stuffy.The first chapter details President Roosevelt’s failing health and his last day alive, April 12, 1945. Truman is promptly brought to the White House where Eleanor Roosevelt tells him of FDR’s death. Shortly thereafter he is s...
  • Terri Wangard
    I like Harry. This is a great story focusing primarily on the four months between his ascendency to the presidency and the end of the war. His earlier life is covered, though, with particular attention to his brief tenure as vice president. He knew when he met with the obviously ailing FDR that he would not remain the vice president for long.Truman’s style is contrasted with FDR’s. He came into the presidency totally unprepared, but I suspect...
  • David
    What a pleasure to pick a book to listen to and find it to be outstanding. I knew this book would be interesting but Blaime tells a compelling story in a fast-paced way. High school educated, failed businessman, possibly machine politician Harry S Truman becomes President on FDR’s death on April 12, 1945. He then faces four of probably the most consequential months the President, Nation and World may have ever faced: VE Day, the atomic bomb, VJ...
  • Brooke
    First things first: I need a film adaptation of this book starring Mark Rylance as Truman ASAP!It was never going to be easy to follow FDR, especially unexpectedly and while in the midst of a world war. Enter Harry Truman, Missouri everyman. Although the least-likely candidate for the job, in hindsight he was perhaps the best. Despite the book's length, Baime focuses on the first four months of Truman's presidency, from FDR's sudden death, to kee...
  • James
    Simply put... fantastic! I cannot count how many books I have read about WW2 and all its different aspects, but among them all, this book really stands out. I sped through this book, anticipating one event to the next. Baime creates excitement surrounding events most of the general public already know. For example, I found myself rushing through to find out what was going to happen after the bomb was dropped on Hiroshima. I highly recommend this...
  • Cgallozzi
    Engaging story of just four months - from the date Franklin Roosevelt dies beginning April 12, 1945.Truman and the nation were shocked by FDR's passing. Truman started his administration by keeping the vast majority of the FDR Cabinet, policies and goals.Much detail - day by day log of what Truman did, what issues he addressed and the pressures upon him. Filled in much of the 'detail' behind the geo-politics surrounding Potsdam and the "clean up"...
  • Ray Beauchesne
    More than ever, Harry Truman seems one of our greatest presidents. He made all the most important decisions of his time and he made them right. What is most striking about Truman is how, superficially, he was absolutely unprepared for being president (certainly his opinion and that of nearly everyone who knew him) and yet how prepared, at the most profound level, he really was to be president. Socrates was right: character matters most of all.
  • Susan O
    I'll add more details later, but overall I enjoyed this book very much. It was also my first Audible book, which was interesting. I'm not sure how or if that effected by enjoyment. I'll have to give it some more thought. If you are interested in Truman or the conclusion of WWII including the decision to drop the atomic bomb and the Potsdam conference, I highly recommend it.
  • Jim Ogle
    I really enjoyed getting a sense of how these four months played out on a daily basis. It is amazing to see what a regular American fully grounded can accomplish. A remarkable story about a remarkable man.
  • Sudha
    Excellent read if you want to know the history at the point in time when Berlin fell
  • Terry Dullum
    Harry had a lot on his plate.
  • Goldbho
    Very good book! It was an easy read and I really was amazed at how got done in 4 months.
  • Robin Case
    Ok, nothing great or exceptional, but nothing horrible either.
  • Gerry Connolly
    In The Accidental President AJ Baime recounts the first four months of Truman's presidency. VE Day, Okinawa, Hiroshima, Potsdam, founding the UN. He was decisive but humble. And consequential.
  • Laura
    This book took me a lot longer to read than I thought it would even though I read it every day. It was just a lot of names and information happening in quick succession. (Not unlike the literal timeline of the events!) The author made the information easy to read and many times I found myself in suspense...even though I know what did happen!