DESTINY OF THE REPUBLIC

A Tale of Madness, Medicine and the Murder of a President

Candice Millard

James A. Garfield was one of the most extraordinary men ever elected

president. Born into abject poverty, he rose to become a wunderkind

scholar, a Civil War hero, and a renowned and admired reformist

congressman. Nominated for president against his will, he engaged in a

fierce battle with the corrupt political establishment. But four months

after his inauguration, a deranged office seeker tracked Garfield down

and shot him in the back.

But the shot didn’t kill Garfield. The

drama of what hap­pened subsequently is a powerful story of a nation in

tur­moil.

more …

James A. Garfield was one of the most extraordinary men ever elected

president. Born into abject poverty, he rose to become a wunderkind

scholar, a Civil War hero, and a renowned and admired reformist

congressman. Nominated for president against his will, he engaged in a

fierce battle with the corrupt political establishment. But four months

after his inauguration, a deranged office seeker tracked Garfield down

and shot him in the back.

But the shot didn’t kill Garfield. The

drama of what hap­pened subsequently is a powerful story of a nation in

tur­moil. The unhinged assassin’s half-delivered strike shattered the

fragile national mood of a country so recently fractured by civil war,

and left the wounded president as the object of a bitter

behind-the-scenes struggle for power—over his administration, over the

nation’s future, and, hauntingly, over his medical care. A team of

physicians administered shockingly archaic treatments, to disastrous

effect. As his con­dition worsened, Garfield received help: Alexander

Graham Bell, the inventor of the telephone, worked around the clock to

invent a new device capable of finding the bullet.

Meticulously researched, epic in scope, and pulsating with an intimate human focus and high-velocity narrative drive, The Destiny of the Republic will stand alongside The Devil in the White City and The Professor and the Madman as a classic of narrative history.

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  • Doubleday
  • Hardcover
  • September 2011
  • 352 Pages
  • 9780385526265

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$28.95

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About Candice Millard

Candice Millard is the New York Times bestselling author of The River of Doubt. She lives in Kansas City with her husband and children.

Praise

“One of the many pleasures of Candice Millard’s new book, Destiny of the Republic,

[is] that she brings poor Garfield to life—and a remarkable life it

was…..Fascinating… Outstanding….Millard has written us a penetrating

human tragedy.”—The New York Times Book Review

“A spirited tale that intertwines murder, politics and medical mystery,

Candice Millard leaves us feeling that Garfield’s assassination deprived

the nation not only of a remarkably humble and intellectually gifted

man but one who perhaps bore the seeds of greatness…. splendidly drawn

portraits…. Alexander Graham Bell makes a bravura appearance”—The Wall Street Journal

“Fascinating……Gripping…..Stunning….has a much bigger scope than

the events surrounding Garfield’s slow, lingering death. It is the

haunting tale of how a man who never meant to seek the presidency found

himself swept into the White House. . . . Ms. Millard shows the Garfield

legacy to be much more important than most of her readers knew it to

be.”—The New York Times

“Crisp, concise and revealing history….Millard has crafted a fresh

narrative that plumbs some of the most dramatic days in U.S.

presidential history”—The Washington Post