No president looms larger in twentieth-century American history than Franklin Delano Roosevelt, and few life stories can match his for sheer drama. He was a man of large personality and a president of vast and enduring accomplishments.
Yet, as the distinguished historian Alonzo Hamby argues, FDR's record as president was more mixed than we are often led to believe. Roosevelt was a great politician and war leader, but the New Deal, his most famous legacy, failed to achieve its goal of reviving the nation's economy, in no small measure because of FDR's hostility toward the business and financial communities.
Hamby is no less perceptive about FDR's private life. Drawing on overlooked sources, he documents the president's final months in intimate detail, claiming that his perseverance despite his serious illness must be counted as one of the twentieth century's great feats of endurance.
Man of Destiny is a measured account of the life, both personal and public, of the most important American leader of the twentieth century.