November 10, 2014

The Passage of Power: The Years of Lyndon Johnson, Vol. IV

Volume IV of this masterful series covers Johnson’s failed campaign for the presidential nomination in 1960, the many miseries of his vice presidency, and the sudden, terrible transition to the presidency that culminated in the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and that forever transformed the country. Caro’s sources are manifold and his methods scrupulous, which often lands him with a technical problem: there’s so much evidence, and that evidence is so good and so various, that is becomes a challenge to remember why we are reviewing this evidence in the first place. The result is sometimes repetitious, but the story bears repeating.