Happy Presidents' Day! There are more books about U.S. presidents than I could possibly describe here, but below I've singled out five that are especially good. Since the third Monday of February is a Federal Holiday in honor of George Washington's birthday, I thought it only appropriate to start with two bios of our first president:

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Ron Chernow's Washington: A Life was declared "magisterial" in the October issue of BookPage; "Chernow’s latest accomplishment is historical biography at its best," wrote reviewer Roger Bishop. This is a "magnificently written, richly detailed and always compelling" story of the indispensable Founding Father's life.
Read more in BookPage.

Back in 2004, Alden Mudge interviewed Joseph J. Ellis about His Excellency: George Washington, a page-turner of a bio—Mudge praises Ellis's ability to dramatize historical events. The interview alone is worth a read for Ellis's comments on writing about an "unapproachable" American icon.
Read more in BookPage.

For a fascinating account of our second president's life, read David McCullough's Pulitzer Prize-winning John Adams. In this book, National Book Award and Pulitzer Prize (twice each) winner McCullough interweaves stories of Adams's private and public lives. BookPage reviewer Roger Bishop calls the volume "exceptional."
Read more in BookPage.

My history-loving boyfriend talks about Robert Caro's Lyndon Johnson biographies with the same passion that I might use to describe my favorite novel (he'd also tell you they're funnier than David Sedaris). So far, the bios include: The Path to Power, Means of Ascent and Master of the Senate. In January, the New York Times reported that Caro is "deep into the fourth and final installment" of his opus—so there's still time for you to catch up! BookPage reviewed Master of the Senate in 2002.
Read more in BookPage.

John Bemelmans Marciano is Madeline creator Ludwig Bemelmans' grandson—and he is enthusiastically carrying on the family tradition. His latest book, Madeline at the White House, takes Madeline and the gang to Washington, D.C. (Yeah, yeah, I know this isn't a presidential bio, but I wanted to throw in a fun pick for the youngest readers!) Marciano filled out a hand-illustrated Q&A for our February issue.
Read more in BookPage.

Which president is of particular interest to you? What is your favorite presidential bio?

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