The Good Neighbor by Maxwell King

The Good Neighbor

Fred Rogers (1928–2003) was an enormously influential figure in the history of television and in the lives of tens of millions of children. As the creator and star of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, he was a champion of compassion, equality, and kindness. Rogers was fiercely devoted to children and to taking their fears, concerns, and questions about the world seriously.The Good Neighbor, the first full-length biography of Fred Rogers, tells the...

Details The Good Neighbor

TitleThe Good Neighbor
Release DateSep 4th, 2018
PublisherHarry N. Abrams
GenreBiography, Nonfiction, Audiobook, Biography Memoir

Reviews The Good Neighbor

  • Brina
    I grew up watching Mister Rogers Neighborhood, and suffice it to say, most Americans who turned five by 2001 probably did as well. My husband watched the program to help him with his English when he first came to this country. Mister Rogers is by all accounts an American icon, so, when I saw on my goodreads feed a few months back that a new biography on Fred Rogers would be published this year, I knew that it was a book I just had to read. The Go...
  • Rebecca McNutt
    I never watched a ton of Mister Roger's Neighborhood growing up (I was more of an Arthur and Goosebumps type of kid and I lost TV access when I was in the third grade, haven't had cable, satellite or streaming since), but it's impossible not to recognize this endearing guy. More than just a famous TV show host, Fred Rogers truly did care about his viewers by all accounts, and in an unfortunate age of the scandals of Bill Cosby and the illegal stu...
  • Katie B
    I recently saw the documentary Won't You Be My Neighbor? and absolutely loved it. Like weeping in the middle of a crowded theater type of love which kinda caught me off guard because although I watched Mister Rogers' Neighborhood growing up, it wasn't exactly must see tv for me. But learning more about this man and how much good he put into the world, just really brought up all these emotions in me. While the film focused primarily on the tv show...
  • Dorie - Traveling Sister :)
    I was anxious to read this biography as my older kids really grew up with Mr. Rodgers and I admire him as a person and role model. However the writing in this biography is so mediocre and repetitive that I just can't finish. It's a shame because this could have been so much better.So DNF for me at 60%
  • Jennifer
    “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news,” Rogers had told his young viewers, “my mother would say to me, 'Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.' To this day, especially in times of disaster, I remember my mother's words, and I am always comforted by realizing that there are still so many helpers – so many caring people in this world.” Yes, there are. Fred Rogers was proof of that. A man...
  • Jen
    Ok, this book may only "speak" to those from the generations of children in America and Canada who watched Mr. Rogers on TV, but while it will tug on our nostalgia, it will also speak to those today who are tired of negativity everywhere we turn.Mr. Rogers was a breath of fresh air in the past and he is still that today. I am SO GLAD that this wasn't a salacious tell-all about Mr. Rogers. He really WAS the person who sang to his tv neighbors ever...
  • Scott S.
    Another outstanding biography (the short list also includes Matthew Polly's Bruce Lee: A Life and Jonathan Eig's Ali: A Life, in my opinion) published since last autumn, King's The Good Neighbor is a double-barreled salvo in presenting the detailed life story of TV host Fred Rogers AND a certain nostalgia factor for a large but relevant audience from North America. A nice, heartwarming refrain throughout the book was that Rogers was a 'what you s...
  • jeremy
    "i'm very much interested in choices, and what it is that enable us human beings to make the choices we make all through our lives. what choices lead to ethnic cleansing? what choices lead to healing? what choices lead to the destruction of the environment, the erosion of the sabbath, suicide bombings or teenagers shooting teenagers? what choices encourage heroism in the midst of chaos?" the good neighbor: the life and work of fred rogers is a co...
  • Stacie C
    What memories do I have of Fred Rogers? I remember his show and I remember puppets but I don’t remember much of the man. Regardless I was intrigued by this biography and the concept of learning more about this man, whose songs I remember but whose life I do not. I feel like everyone remembers the man in the cardigan but no one knew him. After reading this book I feel like I know him and more than that, I miss him. I wish that I had incorporated...
  • Paul
    At the heart of this work lies the questions: How did Fred Rogers do it? How did he create hundreds and hundreds of shows over the course of three decades? Part of it was his family’s wealth, that allowed him to adopt great patience and perfectionism. But it was also a lineage of renowned child psychologists, from Doctor Spock to Margaret McFarland, who gave input into many of the challenging subjects that Rogers tackled over the years. The mos...
  • Felicia
    First things first, I listened to the audiobook- which is narrated by LaVar Burton (of Reading Rainbow fame) so that was immediately exciting.Second my biggest complaint has less to do with Roger’s story and more to do with the author of this story. The book is needlessly repetitive, almost as if the author wanted the book to be longer than it needed to be. Several times as the listener I am told the SAME THING. I found this disappointing becau...
  • Hannah
    I have a hard time calling Fred Rogers anything but Mister Rogers, and that speaks to how much of a cultural symbol he has become for anyone who grew up watching his show--it’s difficult to believe that beyond the Neighborhood, there was a real man who had worries and troubles of his own. King’s loving portrait shines a light on the complexity of Rogers’s life while also revealing that off-camera there was a man just as kind and tender as h...
  • Abby Johnson
    What a great book and a terrific audio recording. Pair LeVar Burton with Mr. Rogers and it's nostalgiafest 2018 (in a good way!). If you grew up watching Mr. Rogers, this is a must read.
  • Passenger B.
    Testament of an extraordinary man who was a leading example of kindness and on how to be a more compassionate, helpful and overall better human being. The writing leaves a little something to desire (for me) here and there which is why I gave it 4.5 stars instead of 5. But overall this is definitely one of the better biographies I've read, especially of the ones I read that were published this year. An absolute keeper!
  • Jen
    Subject: 5 starsWriting: 3 starsWhen I saw the ARC of this title pop up in Edelweiss, I almost broke my finger hitting the download button, since I had just been talking to my husband about how there weren't any really great biographies of Mister Rogers out there. Unfortunately . . . that might still be true. I feel like the book accomplished what a biography should, in that I now know much more than I did about how Mister Rogers came to be Miste...
  • Beth
    What a disappointment.5 stars for the subject, 1 star for the writing. I tried so hard, but did not finish at 40%.This was so repetitive it's not even funny. It was like a high school term paper that required 1000 words but the student only needed 500 words. So we get filler. Repeatedly. Sometimes the same statement is repeated 3 times in a single chapter with slightly different wording. Great, yeah we know Fred spend a summer in an air condition...
  • Patty Smith
    Thanks to Netgalley, Abrams Press, and Maxwell King for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review. My opinions are 100% my own and independent of receiving an advanced copy.Fred Rogers is beloved by millions of people - children, now adults, who remember Mr. Rogers with fondness. His program was the most successful children’s program on public television due to his vision, commitment and singular ability to talk to children on their lev...
  • Karen
    This is the wonderful story of a wonderful man. Loved this audiobook and its narration by Levar Burton.
  • Vicki
    An enjoyable listen with Levar Burton narrating. While the author sometimes repeats the same story or quote in more than one chapter, overall this is an informative and entertaining biography of a man who's influence is still felt 15 years after his death.
  • Sarah
    I wish I could have met him, but from the sound of it Mr. Rogers on TV was Mr. Rogers in real life.
  • Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
    Fred Rogers is my hero. He’s kind and gentle and clever and, best of all, he listens. I read this book with trepidation. Would my hero be dethroned? Would this be the story of a person wildly different from the Mister Rogers I adore?I can tell you, happily, that it is not. Every person, without exception, who met Rogers found him to be exactly as he presented himself on television. He wasn’t a saint—-sometimes he lost his temper and he had ...
  • Rebecca McPhedran
    What a beautifully written tribute to our favorite sweater-wearing neighbor. Many of us know of Mr. Rogers, and if we don't, it's because we we raised under a rock for most of our formative years. His music, his voice, his make-believe characters are all things we fondly remember from childhood. Immensely talented, and incredibly humble, Fred Rogers talked the talk and walked the walk. He was never one to want the spotlight, but because of his ta...
  • Kendra
    Revisiting the life of one of my childhood heroes, read by one of my other childhood heroes. So comforting.This book was not probably the smoothest written biography in the world, but Fred Rogers' life was so fascinating, and deliciously boring, and cheerful, and good. Such a good man. I can only hope, and try, and learn to be more like him. And at the end of the day, I know he would think I was enough. Just the way I am.Someone TELL ME when the ...
  • Amy
    I'll admit to being a little afraid to listen to this. What if Fred Rogers turned out to be a horrible person when he wasn't in the Neighborhood?!?!Thankfully, that was not the case.(This is not a coherent 'review' by any means. It's hard to type when you're crying lol.)This was meticulously researched and at times feels like a big hug. It's trippy to hear about Mr Rogers before he was Mr Rogers, especially his college days (when he once dated mo...
  • Enchantress debbicat ☮~Traveling Sister
    5 stars! I love it! I requested this title from NetGalley just a few days before it was published, after seeing it on my home feed a few times on GoodReads. I instantly knew I would love it after only reading a few pages. I did not get to complete it before the publish date, but I got a notification from Hoopla, the library app, that it was available in ebook and audio. I thought I'd check the audio out as I am in the car a lot for my commute. So...
  • Marie
    There are three ways to ultimate success:The first way is to be kind.The second way is to be kind.The third way is to be kind.― Fred RogersOh, that the world had more people like Fred Rogers: a truly gentle man whose life's work was devoted to kindness, authenticity, and deep-seated values. As a child of the '80s, I adored his quiet, slow-paced show. What I couldn't articulate then is this: it was heavenly programming for the introverted kid. H...
  • Linda
    A wonderful and informative biography of everyone's favorite teacher and neighbor. A lot of his background I knew nothing about. I always knew he was "a good guy" but this book really emphasizes that the Mr. Rogers in real life was the same as the Mr. Rogers on TV. I was sad when I heard he died and this book allows me to mourn again because of the wonderful gifts this man shared with us.
  • Angela
    Such a refreshing read that will restore your confidence in humanity. There is no hidden scandal. Just a guy that was so good down to his core that he came off as kind of weird, because no one is that nice. But apparently he WAS that nice. I followed reading this book by immediately watching the documentary. That was good because you get to watch old clips; but as always, the book is better.
  • John H
    This brought back a lot of memories for me, and I also learned a lot I didn't know about Fred Rogers. He was a true original.