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Someone to Watch Over Me: A Portrait of Eleanor Roosevelt and the Tortured Father Who Shaped Her Life

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A fresh and sensitive examination of Eleanor Roosevelt—one of the most remarkable Americans in history—and the tortured father who would inspire and shape her future leadership and advocacy. 
Eleanor Roosevelt is viewed as one of the most pioneering women in American history. But she was also one of the most enigmatic and lonely. Her loveless marriage with FDR was no secret, and she had a cold relationship with most of her family, as well, from her distant mother to her public rivalry with her cousin, Alice. Yet she was a warm person, beloved by friends, and her humanitarian work still influences the world today. But who shaped Eleanor? It was the most unlikely of figures: her father Elliott, a lost spirit with a bittersweet story.

Elliott was the brother of Theodore Roosevelt, and he was as winsome and charming as Theodore was blustery and competitive. Though the two maintained a healthy rivalry in their youth, Elliott would eventually succumb to alcoholism and would be exiled to the Virginia countryside. But he kept up a close correspondence with his daughter, Eleanor, who treasured his letters and would read them nightly for her entire life for guidance, inspiration, and love.

As he did in the critically acclaimed The Golden Lad, Eric Burns' insightful and lucid prose reveals new facets to the lives of these pillars of American history.

From Publishers Weekly

Jan 30, 2017 – In his second biography about the Roosevelt family, Burns (A Golden Lad) focuses on the beautiful yet tragic relationship between Eleanor Roosevelt and Elliott Bulloch Roosevelt, her father and the charming younger brother of Theodore Roosevelt. Elliott and his wife, Anna Rebecca Ludlow Hall, were a well-known and attractive couple. Eleanor was a disappointment to her mother, but to Elliott she was "a miracle from heaven." Where Anna was cold and indifferent toward Eleanor, Elliott was warm and loving, introducing Eleanor at an early age to the charity work that would serve her well into her final days. Unfortunately, Elliott was absent for most of Eleanor's childhood. He drank heavily, suffered from severe seizures that may have been the result of his drinking, and was addicted to morphine and laudanum. Burns chronicles several failed attempts to send Elliott into rehab, a string of extramarital affairs, and an illegitimate son; eventually Theodore exiled Elliott to Virginia. Elliott and Eleanor constantly wrote to each other, and though Elliott died when Eleanor was only 10 years old, she kept their letters for the rest of her life. Burns's work is captivating, suspenseful, and heartbreaking; this is how biographies should be written.
Someone to Watch Over Me: A Portrait of Eleanor Roosevelt and the Tortured Father Who Shaped Her Life
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  • $9.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Biographies & Memoirs
  • Published: Mar 07, 2017
  • Publisher: Pegasus Books
  • Seller: W. W. Norton
  • Print Length: 304 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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