I picked up You Never Forget Your First: A Biography of George Washington thinking Alexis Coe had prepared a tasty historical snack for me. The book is less than three hundred pages and heavy on the sidebars and listicles–the opening chapter includes a chart titled “Lies We Believe About The Man Who Could Not Tell Them.” Welcome to the beach read biography.
Even though the book is short, the author doesn’t skimp on scholarship. Coe uses Washington’s journals, correspondence, and business ledgers to piece together his story. She draws some interesting conclusions. For example, using primary sources, she worked out that the first president not only wore dentures made of tusks and other people’s teeth, he bought his enslaved people’s teeth at two-thirds less than market value.
Place your hold today for a fresh look at a familiar founding father.