Casey (lastbestchance) wrote in 50bookchallenge,

73. The Years of Lyndon Johnson: Master of the Senate; 74. A Quiet Belief in Angels

The Year of Lyndon Johnson: Master of the Senate
by Robert A. Caro

Started: June 9, 2011
Finished: June 11, 2011

This one started out a bit slow with the first couple of hundred pages mainly dealing with the history of the United States Senate up until Lyndon Johnson's election to it in 1948. I understand the necessity of this as Caro was trying to show the contrast between the power that the Senate had in previous years and the power that LBJ was able to yield during his twelve years serving there, but it still bored me somewhat. But the book got much more interesting after that. Caro's portrait of Richard Russell, who I knew absolutely nothing about, was captivating. Best part of this book was the last two or three hundred pages that focused on the Civil Rights Act of 1957. It's the first time in the last fifteen hundred or so pages of reading about Johnson that I felt like Caro had at least some respect for his subject. I'm looking forward to reading the last volume of this biography whenever it comes out. I know Caro is getting old so I hope it happens sometime reasonably soon. 1,167 pages. Grade:  A
A Quiet Belief in Angels
by R.J. Ellory

Started: June 15, 2011
Finished: June 24, 2011

Basically OK story. Basically mediocre writing. 352 pages. Grade: C-

Total # of books read in 2011: 74
Total # of pages read in 2011: 22,663

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