The Washington Post today carries a terrific review of the new biography of Joseph Pulitzer by my friend, James McGrath Morris, a/k/a Jamie. That it’s a great book should be clear from my own review of it, posted on Amazon:
“Joseph Pulitzer’s story is a classic American rags-to-riches-to-sellout saga. A Jewish immigrant from Hungary, Pulitzer made his way in the rough-and-tumble newspaper business of Missouri after the Civil War. Allying his newspapers with the “little man” against the big shots, Pulitzer invented the irreverent, aggressive, sensational daily press of America at the turn of the Twentieth Century. Becoming fabulously wealthy himself, Pulitzer abandoned his allegiance to the little man and his newspapers ossified. Suffering blindness from two detached retinas, Pulitzer descended into eccentricities, depression, and a sharp alienation from his family.
“James McGrath Morris tells this exciting and cautionary story with great judgment and wit. At a time when our own media seem to have lost their way — gutless broadcast news, shrinking print media, immature Internet vehicles — the time is ripe for someone to refashion how we learn about the world, and how we think about it, the way Pulitzer did. It’s a terrific book — read it. “
But if you feel the need of reading a review by someone less directly conected to the author, check out the Yardley review. You can even check out Jamie’s interview on the PBS News Hour.
Oh, also, buy the book!