The Mantle Of Command: FDR at War, 1941–1942 (Paperback)
Other Books in Series
A dramatic, eye-opening account of how FDR took personal charge of the military direction of World War II.
Based on years of archival research and interviews with the last surviving Roosevelt aides and family members, The Mantle of Command offers a radical new perspective on Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s masterful—and underappreciated—leadership of the Allied war effort.
After the disaster of Pearl Harbor, we see Roosevelt devising a global strategy that will defeat Hitler and the Japanese, rescue Churchill and the British people, and quell a near insurrection of his own American generals and War Department. All the while, Hamilton’s account drives toward Operation Torch—the invasion of French Northwest Africa—and the outcome of the war hangs in the balance.
The Mantle of Command is an intimate, sweeping look at a great president in history’s greatest conflict.
“This bold argument . . . will undoubtedly change the way we see Franklin Roosevelt.”—Christian Science Monitor
“Masterly.”—Wall Street Journal
About the Author
NIGEL HAMILTON is a best-selling and award-winning biographer of President John F. Kennedy, General Bernard “Monty” Montgomery, and President Bill Clinton, among other subjects. His most recent book, The Mantle of Command: FDR at War, 1941–1942, was long-listed for the National Book Award. He is a senior fellow at the McCormack Graduate School, University of Massachusetts, Boston, and splits his time between Boston, Massachusetts, and New Orleans, Louisiana.
"The Mantle of Command is splendid: It’s the memoir Roosevelt didn’t get to write." —New York Times Book Review "Masterly." —Wall Street Journal "FDR has frequently been underestimated as a military leader, yielding, in the historical imagination, to George Marshall and Winston Churchill, among others. Nigel Hamilton attacks this view with his characteristic verve, portraying a president with the reins of war fully, if often subtly, in his hands. The conventional wisdom will never be the same." —H.W. Brands, author of Traitor to His Class: The Privileged Life and Radical Presidency of Franklin Delano Roosevelt "Nigel Hamilton’s Mantle of Command is a stirring and noteworthy book about Roosevelt’s crucial role as commander-in-chief during World War II. Hamilton writes with insight, passion, and a great grasp of history. I believe this book will become the standard by which other books about FDR’s role in World War II will be measured." — Carlo D’Este, author of Patton: A Genius for War and Warlord: A Life of Churchill at War, 1874–1945 "This is not the Roosevelt (or Churchill) you'd expect. From the start, an aggressive, in-charge FDR emerges from a wonderful weaving of established scholarship and the fascinating bits and pieces that make history live. Churchill is an inspirational nag, with a busy, unfocused strategic vision. A key entry into the ongoing debate over who made grand strategy in the early war years — Roosevelt or Churchill?" — Warren F. Kimball, author of Forged in War: Roosevelt, Churchill, and the Second World War "Nigel Hamilton in Mantle of Command presents a very different wartime Franklin Delano Roosevelt than the one we are used to seeing. Whether or not one agrees with all his conclusions, Hamilton clearly shows that FDR was an extremely strong and effective commander-in-chief. This volume should go a long way to dispelling popular myths about Roosevelt as a naïve and weak war leader." — Mark Stoler, editor of the George C. Marshall Papers & Professor Emeritus of History, University of Vermont "Nigel Hamilton has written a spirited and thoughtful ‘revisionist’ study of Franklin Delano Roosevelt as commander-in-chief during the first phase of U.S. involvement in the Second World War. Hamilton’s narrative skill brings alive the human dramas, logistic hurdles, and strategic debates to show how FDR’s indispensable drive and forward-looking leadership tamed his own ‘team of rivals’ and set the United States and its Allies on the road to victory over the Axis. The books enlivens the often murky worlds of bureaucratic struggle and military detail to demonstrate how important it was for the United States to ‘get it right’ early in the war and how FDR accomplished this." —Michael Schaller, author of Douglas MacArthur & Regents Professor of History, University of Arizona —