John Adams, our philosopher-president, was, until recently, overshadowed by many of his founding brothers. But, as John Patrick Diggins consummately demonstrates in his new biographical study, John Adams, consummately read by Richard Rohan, Adams was a prescient leader who valued government and hated politics, who resolutely defended the Supreme Court, the Senate and the military. He was the first president to see the executive branch as the one office that could be held accountable the place where the buck stopped. He wasn't warm and fuzzy and never courted popularity, but was a man of true integrity who oversaw "that one brief moment when the thought of truth shamed the tumult of politics."

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