Books by Will Swift: Biographer and Presidential Historian



The Roosevelts and the Royals
by Will Swift

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Published June 2004 by John Wiley & Sons

Available at Amazon, BN.com,
or your local bookstore

 




Pat and Dick:
The Nixons, an Intimate Portrait of a Marriage

by Will Swift

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Published January 7, 2014 by:
Simon & Schuster (Threshold Editions)

Pat and Dick is now available at:
Amazon, B&N, Books-A-Million,
iBookstore, or your local bookstore

Pat and Dick has launched!
The official launch was a talk during the formal ceremonies of Nixon's 101st birthday at the Nixon Library and Foundation on Saturday, January 11. Author Will Swift spoke at the Nixon Presidential Library in Yorba Linda, CA.
<< Will Swift's Speech >>

INTERVIEWS / APPEARANCES:

March 5, 2014: Pat and Dick author Will Swift was interviewed by Oline Eaton,
host of New Books in Biography
<< Listen to Interview >>


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February 18, 2014: Pat and Dick author Will Swift appeared on MSNBC's The Cycle
<< Watch the Video >>


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January 13, 2014: Pat and Dick author Will Swift appeared on MSNBC's Morning Joe
<< Watch the Video >>

REVIEWS / PRESS:

Pat and Dick has received a rave review in The New York Times Sunday Book Review
and was selected by the NY Times
as an "Editor's Choice" for the
week of February 16, 2014


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Pat and Dick has received a:
*STARRED LIBRARY JOURNAL REVIEW*


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Pat and Dick has received a:
*STARRED KIRKUS REVIEW*


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Pat and Dick has been reviewed in:
Publishers Weekly


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Pat and Dick has been reviewed in:
The Washington Times


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Pat and Dick author Will Swift has been
profiled in Albany's The Times Union
and Hudson's The Register-Star


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Pat and Dick has received a:
Booklist Advance Review


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Pat and Dick is #6 in
Washington Independent Review of Books'
13 Biographies To Watch For This Fall


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Pat and Dick was selected by Vanity Fair
to appear in its "Hot Type" column in
the January 2014 issue


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Pat and Dick was chosen as a Featured Alternate selection of the History Book Club and Alternate selection of the Military Book of the Month Club, the Literary Guild, the Doubleday Book Club, and the web-based BOMC2.

EXCERPTS / ARTICLES:

Excerpts from Pat and Dick have been published in POLITICO Magazine and
the Extraordinary Lives collection.

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Author Will Swift has a
new article
on Pat Nixon in The Daily Caller.

ADVANCE PRAISE FOR PAT AND DICK:

"The daunting challenge in writing a dual biography, particularly one about a president and First Lady, is composing the subjects in a comfortable balance, so that one does not eclipse the other. Swift meets this challenge brilliantly, and his Nixons--equally fascinating--illuminate each other. The result is an insightful and engaging book." -Daniel Mark Epstein, author of The Lincolns: Portrait of a Marriage

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"Pat and Dick is a portrait of two tough-luck kids who fell in love, took on the world, were savaged by their foes, lashed back, claimed the highest prize - and lost it. Spectacular, yet intimate. The Nixons you didn't know." -John Farrell, author of Clarence Darrow: Attorney for the Damned

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"With an eye for the telling detail, Will Swift deftly revises our view of the Nixon marriage, showing that the reserve the couple displayed in public masked a deep love and abiding respect. The marriage underwent strains that would test even the strongest ties, and Swift is frank in assessing these. He uses his expertise as a psychologist to compare the Nixon marriage to others—in the ups and downs, the use of varying techniques to preserve the union, and the differing needs of the two partners. Even readers who thought they fully understood "Plastic Pat" and "Tricky Dick" will be enlightened by Swift's perspective and delighted with his vivid descriptions." -Betty Boyd Caroli, author of First Ladies: From Martha Washington to Michelle Obama

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"Will Swift's Pat and Dick is the most humanizing portrait of the Nixons we're likely to have. Based on first-rate research, clear writing and smart analysis Pat and Dick triumphantly sets the historical record straight in these illuminating pages. Highly recommended." -Douglas Brinkley, author of Walter Cronkite and The Great Deluge

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"Will Swift's deeply moving and nuanced portrait of the Nixon marriage sheds new light - and brings a fascinating layer of human emotion - to the most controversial president of the 20th Century. This is not just a book for scholars, but for anyone who has ever wondered about the real lives behind the scandal of the Nixon era." -Amanda Foreman, author of A World on Fire: Britain's Crucial Role in the American Civil War

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"Will Swift, a superb researcher and an insightful psychologist, has written the first dual biography of Pat and Dick Nixon. This intriguingly fresh and lucid portrait of these two epochal figures will be the standard reference work for many years." -Irwin Gellman, author of The Contender: Richard Nixon, The Congress Years 1946-1952

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"Will Swift's excellent Pat and Dick is thorough, fair-minded, and evidence-based. This is a compelling and eye-opening portrait of a complicated, but good marriage. In this beautifully written book, Swift gives us an incisive lens to understand the politics and psychology of late 20th-century society." -Evan Thomas, author of Ike's Bluff: President Eisenhower's Secret Battle to Save the World, and Robert Kennedy: His Life

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"This is an excellent work of biography that should be read by anyone interested in the Nixon presidency or more broadly about marriage in post-war American society. While not engaging in hagiography, it humanizes Richard Nixon in a way that will surprise his detractors and clearly establishes the importance of Pat Nixon to him throughout his political career and beyond. This splendidly researched and very well written book is a pleasure to read." -Iwan Morgan, Commonwealth Fund Professor of American History at University College London and author of Nixon

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"For someone who was taught from childhood to loathe Richard "Tricky Dick" Nixon -- and to pity poor plain, stoic Pat -- Will Swift's sympathetic but rigorous examination of their marriage upended many long-held assumptions and left me deeply moved by the end. This president and his first lady left such a deep mark on their times and our history that it is important to come to understand, in reading Pat and Dick, the intricate personal drama that was going on behind the public upheavals." -Kate Buford, author of Burt Lancaster: An American Life

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"Pat and Dick does exactly what a biography should do: show its subjects with empathy, insight, and critical acumen. We see Richard and Pat Nixon as they saw themselves, beleaguered and underdeserving of the bad press they often received. At various points, the hard-driving Nixon tried to modify his public image as a political hit man to no avail, even when he proposed progressive policies. His shrewd and sensitive wife was sometimes shut out of key decisions, and yet he also acknowledged what a great ambassador she was for his politics and their marriage. Swift does not minimize their failings, especially their vindictive and petty efforts to punish their critics, but he also shows why the pressures of office made them behave, at times, with such animosity. In Pat and Dick the personal and political merge in a narrative that makes Swift's book one of the must-read biographies of the age." -Carl Rollyson, author of Amy Lowell Anew: A Biography

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"Pat and Dick is a joy. It is smart, thoughtful, poignant and insightful. Will Swift sensitively renders two of the most caricatured and pilloried Americans of the late twentieth century in all their multi-dimensionality and complexity. Pat and Dick offers readers a guided tour of America, illuminating its politics, the American family, the White House, and the American home." -Gil Troy, author of Mr. and Mrs. President: From the Trumans to the Clintons

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"All marriages are mysterious and few were more so, or suffered more stress, than the fifty-plus-year union of Richard Nixon and Thelma (Pat) Ryan. Will Swift, a biographer and a psychologist, gets as close as anyone is likely to get in giving us a realistic and nuanced understanding of the Nixons in hard times, good times, and the very worst of times." -Jeffrey Frank, author of Ike and Dick: Portrait of a Strange Political Marriage

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"In his sympathetic yet not uncritical portrayal of the Nixon marriage, Will Swift brings his keen insights as a clinical psychologist and his considerable skills as an historian to explain the always fascinating and complex relationship between two very private public figures. Moreover, he perceptively describes their enduring relationship in the context of evolving attitudes toward marriage in postwar America." -Melvin Small, author of The Presidency of Richard Nixon

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"Will Swift has given us a true joint biography. His book Pat and Dick proves beyond any doubt how emotionally committed and humanly vulnerable the President could be when it came to his wife. Swift's mellifluous writing creates a balance point between their individual stories in a highly readable narrative. We come to see how Pat Nixon had an impact on the Administration that was ignored or not perceived during their White House years. The book also merits by giving serious analysis to their post-White House years when there was a sense of redemption and even deeper love and understanding between them." -Carl Sferrazza Anthony, author of the two-volume First Ladies, National First Ladies Library Historian

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"In analyzing the Nixon's marriage, Will Swift provides new insight into two of the most complex political actors of the twentieth century. Swift further erodes the "plastic Pat" image, giving her a place of prominence beside, not behind, her husband." -Mary C. Brennan, author of Pat Nixon: Embattled First Lady

 

 




The Kennedys Amidst the Gathering Storm
by Will Swift

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Chapter | Photos | Order | Contact

Published April 2008 by Smithsonian Books

Available at Amazon, BN.com,
or your local bookstore.

 

Books by Will Swift: Biographer and Presidential Historian