Books: Politician into President

F.D.R.: HIS PERSONAL LETTERS, VOLS. III & IV (1,615 pp.)—Edited by Elliott Roosevelt—Duell, Sloan & Pearce ($ 10).

"Be very certain," wrote F.D.R. to his friend and counselor, Louis McHenry Howe, in November 1928, "that the 'A' letter goes to the successful candidates and the 'B' letter to the defeated candidates." Just elected governor of New York, Roosevelt was already patching and extending his fences. The bulk of the letters he wrote during the next few years show a man glad-handing his political allies, shrewdly holding the lid over his political boom lest it explode prematurely, and generally behaving the way a...

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