The War Memoirs FDR
Did Not Get to Write

9780547775241_120749780544279117_196a7Soaring on Amazon’s sales rankings are two books by Nigel Hamilton, the first titles in an expected three book series on Franklin Roosevelt and WWII.

Hamilton appeared on CNN’s Fareed Zakaria GPS on Sunday to talk about FDR’s role in creating the current world order, which say Zakaria, is what’s  “been keeping the peace in the world for 70 years … it’s that world order, of course, that Trump sometimes seems intent to disassemble.” His appearance caused the first book in the set, The Mantle of Command: FDR at War, 1941–1942 (HMH/Mariner; Tantor Audio; OverDrive Sample), to leap to #58 and the second, Commander in Chief: FDR’s Battle with Churchill, 1943 (HMH; OverDrive Sample) to rise to #16.

Hamilton tells Zakaria that because FDR died prematurely he never got to write his account of WWII, leaving the field clear for Winston Churchill to publish his own six volume set that went on to win the Nobel Prize for Literature.

The story Churchill told paints a different picture from historical fact says Hamilton, who tells Zakaria he hopes to change our perception of history by showing that it was FDR, not Churchill, who was directed the war’s military strategy and its global reordering.

Hamilton says that FDR had a vision of how the world order could be changed for the better. He was an idealist who was against imperialism and colonialism. Churchill, on the other hand, was leading a country highly invested in both.

Writing for the NYT BR, historian Evan Thomas calls Mantel of Command “fast-paced, smartly observed … Hamilton writes with brio and narrative drive. On the whole, The Mantle of Command is splendid: It’s the memoir Roosevelt didn’t get to write.”

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