Destiny of the Republic - Candice Millard

Destiny of the Republic

By Candice Millard

  • Release Date: 2011-09-20
  • Genre: Biographies & Memoirs
Score: 4.5
From 731 Ratings


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.


  • Page turner !

    By CrazyinKarachi
    Wow! I love books like this that weave direct source historical accounts into a story that reads like a page-turning novel. It provided a fascinating window both into President Garfield, who is not nearly familiar enough given his significance, as well as the U.S. at a time of great growth and growing pains.
  • Superb History

    By Sherjo53
    This book enlightened me about a president of whom I knew very little. The author brought him to life as well as the times. The information about Dr. Lister and Alexander graham bell was also interesting as their lives all entertwined. We often forget the connections that occur in life as well as the personal nature of all of us famous or otherwise. She has brought an insight into the human frailties and strengths of us all.
  • Good Book

    By Emmet Aloysius
    An informative, enlightening accounting of the life and death of James Garfield, an American president who I knew very little about. What a heroic and tragic figure he was and Millard tells the tale in a easy to understand and enjoyable way. A good book for history buffs...EAF
  • Destiny of the Republic is excellent

    By Dr Joe B
    Not knowing anything about the Garfield presidency other than his assassination attempt, I was astounded by the dramatic and historic detail that went into this book. Excellent...two thumbs up!!
  • Lost History

    By CB FL
    A slow miserable death for a man who deserved much better, but like so many of his generation, Garfield was sacrificed for the status quo. Well written similar to the O'Reilly "killing" series. It's a page turner.
  • Destiny of the Republic

    By Ctrefney
    I usually read fiction but if all non-fiction were as enjoyable as this book, I would consider reading more of them. Very informative and well-written, it pulls you right in at the beginning and doesn't let go until the final page. I even went through all the notes near the end. I may have to make a pilgrimage to Mentor, OH and Washington, DC to visit the sites that Ms. Millard visited for her research.
  • Destiny of the Republic

    By tejaandmike
    An amazing book that put life into man history had forgotten. Garfield was extraordinary. I think America would be a better place had he been left to serve. So sad.
  • Destiny of the Republic

    By Tex Turkey
    The best book I have ever read . Couldn't put it down for a minute . The story was one i didn't know about an one I won't forget about .
  • A great read!

    By Cornell9499
    Very easy to read and an amazing story of one of our lesser known Presidents.
  • Heart wrenching and glorious

    By Bradens09
    I never learned about Garfield in school. Heck, I could barely remember that he was one of the 4 presidents assassinated in our history. After reading this book I am in awe of him. I actually cried when he died. The author wrote in a way that made me fall in love with him, just as our nation did over 100 years ago. Absolutely a must read. I will forever revere Garfield as a great man, father, husband, and president.