Eisenhower: A Soldier's Life, by Carlo D'Este. Henry Holt. 672 pages. $35
Carlo D'Este's book is massive and detailed in its coverage, balanced and judicious in its statements and strong and clear in its prose.
D'Este, who previously wrote the outstanding biography Patton: A Genius for War, demonstrates the complexities of Eisenhower. Far smarter and more ambitious than many of his colleagues, Eisenhower learned early to hide both behind an engaging smile and warm personality.
As Eisenhower once reflected, his job was like "trying to arrange the blankets smoothly over several prima donnas in the same bed."
Eisenhower is not perfect. Occasionally it is repetitious, and its pages hold a few minor errors. But such imperfections do little to weaken the fabric of this splendid biography