It took me several months to get through this book. It is well-researched but VERY lengthy and dry at times. Don't start it unless you are a history buff with a lot of time on your hands.
Overall, the book matched the trajectory of Adams' life. I was interested to learn about his early career as a lawyer in Boston - he defended some of the British soldiers involved in the Boston massacre. His logic for representing them is actually quite moving to read and reflect on. It peaked in the middle, as he was overseas and living in Europe for several years. By the time I got to the last third of the book, when he was elected President, I was over the book and Adams was none too thrilled to be running the country.
The writing did pique my interest in some of the secondary characters though, namely Alexander Hamilton. I picked up a biography on him that I am about to tackle.
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Overshadowed by the lustrous presidents Washington and Jefferson, who bracketed his tenure in office, Adams emerges from McCullough's brilliant biography as a truly heroic figure--not only for his significant role in the American Revolution but also for maintaining his personal integrity in its strife-filled aftermath. McCullough spends much of his narrative examining the troubled friendship between Adams and Jefferson, who had in common a love for books and ideas but differed on almost every other imaginable point. Reading his pages, it is easy to imagine the two as alter ...