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Edmund Morris Books In Order

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Publication Order of Theodore Roosevelt Books

The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt (1979)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Theodore Rex (2001)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Colonel Roosevelt (2010)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Non-Fiction Books

Dutch: A Memoir of Ronald Reagan (1999)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Beethoven: The Universal Composer (2005)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
This Living Hand: Essays (2012)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Edison (2019)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

About Edmund Morris

The British American biographer and author Edmund Morris was world renowned for his ability in drawing out his subjects. Getting to the heart of any topic or personality, he was gifted at creating a sense of closeness with the people he was writing about, Showing exactly who they were, he really knew how to flesh them out, essentially bringing them to life upon the page for the reader. This approach of his worked on numerous different levels over the years, as he would experiment with the form, finding something entirely new in the process.

Setting himself apart from other writers within his field, he’s allowed his subjects to speak for themselves, really letting them tell their story. Knowing the reader as well, he understood perfectly what they wanted to gain from the text, allowing them to find their own meaning within the subject. This wasn’t to say that he didn’t have his own viewpoint though, as he was clear and articulate in his own outlook, saying exactly what it was that he wanted to say. Writing in an impassioned manner, his style and tone was very much his own, as his reader would immediately know that it was him.

Creating new stylistic literary devices when it came to writing a biography, he would often position the reader as an impartial invisible observer. Letting the events of a person’s life unfold in front of the reader, he creates an air of intimacy with them quite unlike any other. Winning numerous awards for his work too, he’s not without critical acclaim either, receiving a Pulitzer, along with a National Book Award in 1980 for his biography of Theodore Roosevelt. Leaving behind a strong legacy with his work, his writing continues to resonate and inspire to this day, as it finds more and more readers all the time.

Early and Personal Life

Born in 1940 on the 27th of May, Edmund Morris was born in Nairobi in Kenya, which was where he was raised by South-African parents. Attending and studying at Rhodes University, he would drop out of college in 1961, whereby he would go to work in the advertising department of a Durban based menswear store. Using his talents as a writer, he would help reach a wide audience, using his skills to promote various different items and garments.

Over time he would develop his own personal style, reaching an ever increasing audience of readers from all around the world. In 1964 he would move to Britain, whereby he would continue to work in advertising, as he refined and honed his voice as a writer. Working as a copywriter there, he would continue writing, before then releasing his first biography in 1979, making a name for himself that lives on to this day.

Writing Career

In 1979 Edmund Morris would publish his first book, which was a biography titled ‘The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt.’ Looking at the 26th President of the United States Theodore Roosevelt, it would paint an intimate portrait of his life and work in office. A film was planned by Martin Scorsese starring Leonardo DiCaprio, but this was ultimately shelved in the end.

Winning numerous awards for his work, Morris would go on to write several other acclaimed biographies over the years as well. Producing a lot of work for numerous different publications too, including The New York Times, The New Yorker, and Harper’s Magazine to name a few, he would become a much sought after literary figure. Passing in 2019 on May the 24th, he would leave behind a legacy that continues to inspire a new generation of both readers and writers alike.

The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt

First published back in 1979, this would come out on the 30th of March, being the first in the series of Theodore Roosevelt biographies. Charting a real piece of American history, it would follow the early part of Roosevelt’s life in the run-up to becoming president. Winning awards, it would receive a Pulitzer and a National Book Award, gaining both of them in 1980 just one year after its release.

This book looks at the rise of Theodore Roosevelt and his ascendancy to becoming the 26th president of the United States. Looking at the earlier part of his life, at charts his progress from birth, through to his rising up through the political ranks. Showing his evolution as a person, it provides a clear perspective of how he came to be, and what it took to get there. Examining what drove him as a younger man, it casts a light on his ambition, and how he used it to get ahead and make changes.

Well written and well researched, this really gets behind who the president was as a person, giving the reader a real insight into his life. It’s also highly accessible, making it easy to pick up for those with no background or prior knowledge of the subject matter, or the era in question. Close attention has been paid to detail, really bringing the period itself to life, allowing the audience to fully inhabit it.

Dutch: A Memoir of Ronald Reagan

Originally released in 1999 on the 1st of January, this would first publish through the ‘Random House’ publishing imprint. A stand-alone biography, it would contain fictional elements to it, with factors from Edmund Morris’s own life driving it forwards. Many readers would come to appreciate this framing device, as it would provide a window into the world and mindset of exactly who Reagan was.

This was to be the first biography in history authorized by an American president, as it charts the life of Ronald Reagan. Looking at what had to him taking power, it gets behind what drove Reagan as an individual, and all the events leading to him taking office. It also takes a look at how he would shape the face of modern America at that time, changing the face of politics. From his birth right through all of his earlier jobs and positions, it lands on the American presidency, showing exactly who Ronald Reagan was as a man.

The book itself would make a huge impact upon its release and it’s easy to see why, with its unconventional nature and framing device. Using himself, Morris uses a fictionalized account of his own life to help frame and shape the narrative of the book itself. This helps underpin what is essentially a character study of Reagan as a man, in what is a well written and insightful title.

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