Review of “Means of Ascent: The Years of Lyndon Johnson (Vol 2)” by Robert Caro

My Journey Through the Best Presidential Biographies

Means of Ascent: The Years of Lyndon Johnson” is the second volume in Robert Caro’s series covering the life of Lyndon B. Johnson.  Caro is a former investigative reporter and the author of two Pulitzer Prize-winning biographies: “Master of the Senate” (the third volume in this series) and “The Power Broker” about the life of Robert Moses.  Caro is currently working on the fifth (and, presumably, final) volume in his LBJ series.

Published in 1990, “Means of Ascent” covers seven difficult years of LBJ’s life – from shortly after his 1941 loss in a special election for the U.S. Senate (while a congressman) to his controversial 1948 Senate victory over former Texas governor Coke Stevenson. This 412-page volume is the shortest in Caro’s series but again demonstrates the author’s tenacious research habits and willingness to dive deeply into a subject.

Caro’s writing style in…

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