Reviewed by Isaac Moore
T.R. The Last Romantic by H.W. Brands regales the tale of former president Theodore, or Teddy—as he was popularly known, Roosevelt. Chronicling former President Roosevelt’s life story from womb to tomb1858-1919. Brands tells the story of Teddy’s travels from around the U.S. to Egypt and Europe. Former president Roosevelt’s biography presents the tale of one of the most popular presidents in U.S. history.
In the biography T.R. The Last Romantic, Teddy’s tale starts with his childhood, of course. Brands conveys a melancholy tone with hope for a light at the end of the tunnel when describing Roosevelt’s sickly youth. He allows us to see through young Roosevelt’s eyes with a sense of childish glee as Teddy wanders the Egyptian Bazaar, looking for chemicals with which to taxidermy birds. Brands brings tears to one’s eyes with the somber tone used to describe the death of Roosevelt’s first wife: Alice Hathaway Lee Roosevelt. All in all, H.W. Brands does a beautiful job of telling former President Theodore Roosevelt’s story.
I personally enjoyed this beautifully written biography of one of America’s greatest Presidents. I would recommend this book for stronger, more mature readers, not for explicit content, but because it is a challenging read. T.R. The Last Romantic by H.W. Brands is a biography that all other biographies should strive to mimic.
Isaac Moore was a junior in the Gifted program at Hahnville High. He enjoys playing tennis for the school as well as playing in the Hahnville High School Band.
Editor’s note: Book reviews are published throughout the summer and fall in agreement with Hahnville High School gifted English teacher Deborah Unger in conjunction with the Brown Foundation Service Learning Program and Unger’s “Adolescents Advocate Literacy” Brown Service Learning Grant.