I love reading history but find choosing a book in the genre difficult. Honestly, some of the recent books that humanize great figures of history by telling some sordid, only perhaps true tale leave me yawning. If I want fiction or guess work I've got plenty of celebrity magazines with more credibility available.
History, especially biography, also requires a delicate balance between including enough detail while still making the story interesting.
Lynne Cheney does an excellent job in James Madison, and I really enjoyed the book. Cheney is more than just a successful man's wife she's also a highly educated woman and this book isn't her first.
The research included is impressive but Cheney also moves the story along and makes it compelling. I didn't know much about Madison before reading the book and based my understanding on long ago history classes. I now not only understand him better but also got a great refresher in the founding of our country.
Book grade: A