A Good Life

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Simon and Schuster, May 31, 2011 - Biography & Autobiography - 512 pages
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This is the witty, candid story of a daring young man who made his own way to the heights of American journalism and public life, of the great adventure that took him at only twenty years old straight from Harvard to almost four years in the shooting war in the South Pacific, and back, from a maverick New Hampshire weekly to an apprenticeship for Newsweek in postwar Paris, then to the Washington Bureau chief’s desk, and finally to the apex of his career at The Washington Post.

Bradlee took the helm of The Washington Post in 1965. He and his reporters transformed it into one of the most influential and respected news publications in the world, reinvented modern investigative journalism, and redefined the way news is reported, published, and read. Under his direction, the paper won eighteen Pulitzer Prizes. His leadership and investigative drive following the break-in at the Democratic National Committee led to the downfall of a president, and kept every president afterward on his toes. Bradlee, backed every step of the way by the Graham family, challenged the federal government over the right to publish the Pentagon Papers—and won. His ingenuity, and the spirited reporting of Sally Quinn, now his wife, led to the creation of the Style Section, a revolutionary newspaper feature in its time, now copied by just about every paper in the country.

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A good life: newspapering and other adventures

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Bradlee, immortalized in the Watergate film All the President's Men, retired in 1991 after 26 years as executive editor of the Washington Post. This memoir, bluntly written and sprinkled with salty ... Read full review

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About the author (2011)

Benjamin C. Bradlee was born on August 26, 1921 in Boston, Massachusetts. He graduated from Harvard University in 1942. Before becoming a reporter and editor at Newsweek and the Washington Post, he worked for the State Department in Paris. As a reporter in the 1950s, he became close friends with then-Senator John F. Kennedy. In 1960, he toured with both Kennedy and Richard Nixon in their presidential campaigns. He later wrote a book, Conversations with Kennedy, recounting their relationship during those years. He was the executive editor of the Washington Post from 1968 to 1991. In 1971, The New York Times and the Post successfully challenged the government over the right to publish the Pentagon Papers. One year later, he oversaw the Post's Pulitzer Prize-winning coverage of the Watergate affair. The Post received 18 Pulitzers during his tenure. His other books include A Good Life: Newspapering and Other Adventures and A Life's Work: Fathers and Sons written with his son Quinn Bradlee. In 2013, he received the Presidential Medal of Freedom. He died of natural causes on October 21, 2014 at the age of 93.

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