The Compulsive Energy That Built A Nation
When most of us think of Charles Lindbergh, we picture a mild-mannered, 25-year-old aviator stepping out of The Spirit of St. Louis after completing his solo flight across the Atlantic. What we don't see is the boy who made detailed inventories of his toy soldiers. Sure, Lindbergh invented the pre-flight checklist, but his obsession with order also led him to demand that his wife and German mistresses account for all household expenditures in detailed ledgers. Like many of the icons that Joshua Kendall puts on the couch in his new book, Lindbergh is a uniquely American type-the obsessive. And based on his dogged archival research and extensive interviewing, Kendall also examines the inner lives of six other obsessive-compulsive personalities-Thomas Jefferson, H.J. Heinz, librarian Melvil Dewey, baseball slugger Ted Williams, sexologist Alfred Kinsey, and cosmetics entrepreneur Estée Lauder. America's Obsessives is an anecdote-rich examination of the link between greatness and...
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