14 books directly related to Richard Nixon 📚

All 14 Richard Nixon books as recommended by authors and experts. Updated weekly.

Book cover of America's Stolen Narrative: From Washington and Madison to Nixon, Reagan and the Bushes to Obama

America's Stolen Narrative: From Washington and Madison to Nixon, Reagan and the Bushes to Obama

By Robert Parry

Why this book?

This is an encyclopedia for anybody who wants to doublecheck the official version of events in US history starting from George Washington all the way through the presidencies of Nixon, the two Bushes, and Barak Obama. Investigative journalist Robert Parry worked for Associated Press and Newsweek on the Iran-Contra affair and spent years on the October Surprise, that cost President Jimmy Carter a second term. If you want to understand the role of the arms industry on US foreign policy since World War II, this is a great start. Or as President Eisenhower put it in his farewell address: “……

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The best books on real conspiracies

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Book cover of All the President's Men

All the President's Men

By Carl Bernstein, Bob Woodward

Why this book?

I know, I know...non-fiction. But as far as I’m concerned, definitely still a thriller, and to this day, the quintessential political scandal. There are so many iconic facets to the story: the anonymous whistleblower Deep Throat’s invocation to follow the money; Woodward and Bernstein’s dogged refusal to drop the story, even when all appeared to be lost; the slow burn of revelation upon revelation.

This wasn’t about car chases and guns. It was about paper trails and getting sources on the record. 

The bravery of that never left me, and was always in my mind while writing my book…

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The best political thriller books that dared to be different

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Book cover of The Haldeman Diaries: Inside the Nixon White House

The Haldeman Diaries: Inside the Nixon White House

By H.R. Haldeman

Why this book?

There was no one closer to Richard Nixon as Watergate unfolded than his chief of staff, Bob Haldeman. Every evening, Haldeman dictated an audio diary that is an essential source for understanding the Nixon presidency and the chain of events that led to its unraveling. While Haldeman admired Nixon, he was also well aware of his faults. He records the triumphs, failures, and personal quirks of his boss on an almost minute-to-minute basis. I think that Haldeman has it right when he concludes that Nixon did not know about Watergate in advance, in the sense that he did not order…

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The best books to understand Watergate

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Book cover of Richard Nixon: The Life

Richard Nixon: The Life

By John A. Farrell

Why this book?

In order to understand Watergate, you first have to understand Richard Nixon. This is the best, single-volume biography that chronicles Nixon's life in a balanced and fair way that gives us great insight into his character and motivations. Published in 2017, it is a model of its kind. Farrell attempts neither to vilify Nixon nor to defend him, but to explain him, in the context of his times. He gives us the extraordinary story of the self-made man from a struggling Quaker family in California who rose to the top through his own efforts - and then threw it all…

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The best books to understand Watergate

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Book cover of Being Nixon: A Man Divided

Being Nixon: A Man Divided

By Evan Thomas

Why this book?

Although Nixon has been our most disgraced president, pre-Trump, he (like LBJ) is a marvelously complicated study of a person with major strengths and weaknesses, and a refusal to be defeated by any obstacles or setbacks. Thomas is discerning in his understanding of what made his subject tick—which is quite an achievement.
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The best presidential biographies

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Book cover of Peril

Peril

By Bob Woodward, Robert Costa

Why this book?

There is probably no journalist in Washington more revered and connected than Bob Woodward. From his Watergate fame five decades earlier, the Washington Post legendary reporter and editor has continued his eye-opening, impressive work. Peril is his final book in a trilogy on the Trump administration. He and fellow Post journalist Robert Costa interviewed more than 200 administrative players who provide this account with the deep-sourced material that Woodward fans have come to expect. 

While numerous interviews are off the record and the focus of the book is more on officials than foot soldiers who carried out the attack, the…

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The best books on the January 6th Capitol attack

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Book cover of The President's Man: The Memoirs of Nixon's Trusted Aide

The President's Man: The Memoirs of Nixon's Trusted Aide

By Dwight Chapin

Why this book?

Dwight Chapin joined former Vice President Richard Nixon’s staff in 1962, in connection with his unsuccessful California gubernatorial run. He functioned as Nixon’s personal aide for the next decade, spending hours and hours as his “body man.” I knew and worked with Dwight for the four years of Nixon’s first term as president, but worked on domestic policy initiatives and never had the “face time” with the President that he did.

Dwight’s book reflects fifty years of musings about one of our greatest presidents, yet one who resigned in disgrace because of Watergate. His stories, his insights, and his understandings…

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The best recent books about Richard Nixon

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Book cover of The Nixon Tapes: 1973

The Nixon Tapes: 1973

By Douglas Brinkley

Why this book?

Because of the secret taping system that recorded Nixon’s conversations from February 1971 to the system’s exposure in July 1973, President Nixon’s time in office is better documented than that of any other president, before or since. But the system itself was hardly ideal for researchers. Separate recorders were placed in the Oval Office, as well as in the Cabinet Room, the President’s EOB hide-away office, and even in Aspen Lodge at Camp David. The result is some 3,700 hours of recordings, almost haphazardly located on dozens of four-inch tape reels. Professor Luke Nichter is the nation’s foremost authority on…

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The best recent books about Richard Nixon

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Book cover of The Greatest Comeback: How Richard Nixon Rose from Defeat to Create the New Majority

The Greatest Comeback: How Richard Nixon Rose from Defeat to Create the New Majority

By Patrick J. Buchanan

Why this book?

Pat Buchanan joined Nixon’s staff in 1966 and was the conservative guru on his White House staff throughout Nixon’s terms in office. Totally written off for dead after his 1962 loss to Edmund “Pat” Brown as California’s governor, Nixon remerged to be sworn in as our 37th President in January 1969 – and Pat was with him every step of the way. This book is Buchanan’s insider account of how that recovery was planned, executed, and ultimately achieved. Its stories reflect lessons and insights for everyone interested in national campaigns. I served alongside Pat in the Nixon White House,…

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The best recent books about Richard Nixon

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Book cover of Utopia for Realists: How We Can Build the Ideal World

Utopia for Realists: How We Can Build the Ideal World

By Rutger Bregman

Why this book?

I read this book while on a fellowship in Germany. Needing to lighten my luggage, I left it in the apartment I had rented. When I returned a year later, it was still there. With less to carry that time, I happily took it back. Bregman pulls no punches in how we get to a better world, and he knows that implementing his recommendations will require considerable political courage and persuasion. Eradicate poverty and give people time to achieve their potential – through a universal basic income, a shorter work week, higher taxes on those whose jobs hurt the public…

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The best books on an optimistic view of the future

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Book cover of From Bible Belt to Sunbelt: Plain-Folk Religion, Grassroots Politics, and the Rise of Evangelical Conservatism

From Bible Belt to Sunbelt: Plain-Folk Religion, Grassroots Politics, and the Rise of Evangelical Conservatism

By Darren Dochuk

Why this book?

Darren Dochuk’s From Bible Belt to Sunbelt is a fascinating account of a crucial development in the evolution of the Christian right—how evangelicals first became Republicans. He argues when many Southern evangelicals moved during the Dust Bowl and the Great Depression from the Southern states to urban centers of Southern California, especially Los Angeles and Orange County, they fundamentally altered American politics. Southern evangelical preachers and businessmen argued against the New Deal and the United Nations as incipient communism but also opposed the civil rights movement. These messages flourished within its intended audience who evolved from New Deal Democrats to…
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The best books to understand the historical development of the Christian Right as a political power

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Book cover of Blind Ambition: The White House Years

Blind Ambition: The White House Years

By John W. Dean

Why this book?

Dean's book is essential to understanding the psychodrama that led to the unraveling of the Watergate conspiracy. An ambitious lawyer picked to serve as White House counsel at the age of thirty-one, Dean feared that he was being set up to take the blame for Watergate. He was the first Nixon aide to appreciate the legal perils of the cover-up and the risks he was being asked to run. In order to save himself, he had to exit the conspiracy, betraying the president who was relying on him to throw a blanket over the scandal. In this 1976 memoir, Dean…

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The best books to understand Watergate

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Book cover of Abandoning Vietnam: How America Left and South Vietnam Lost Its War

Abandoning Vietnam: How America Left and South Vietnam Lost Its War

By James H. Willbanks

Why this book?

A perfect example of what a well-researched and written academic book on the Vietnam War should be.  Abandoning Vietnam tells the critical story of the military side of how America exited its conflict in Vietnam. In most western books on the Vietnam War, our allies in Vietnam, the South Vietnamese, are missing. But this book makes clear South Vietnam’s manifold strengths and clear weaknesses and why our alliance with them failed. The failure of that alliance not only cost more than 50,000 American lives but cost the Vietnamese millions and cost South Vietnam its very life. 

We like to forget…

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The best books about the Vietnam War from different POVs

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Book cover of The Last Liberal Republican: An Insider's Perspective on Nixon's Surprising Social Policy

The Last Liberal Republican: An Insider's Perspective on Nixon's Surprising Social Policy

By John Roy Price

Why this book?

John Price is a liberal Republican, in the old-fashioned sense of the word, but choosing to self-identify today as a moderate. This book details his political coming to age, including being co-founder of the Ripon Society. Following Nixon’s 1968 election, Price joined his White House staff as one of Daniel Patrick Moynihan’s deputies, serving as director of the Urban Affairs Council. Nixon attended twenty-one of its twenty-three Cabinet Room meetings. Nixon was adamantly anti-Communist, but what John shows is that, far from being a die-hard conservative, his approach to governing was that of a pragmatist, asking how best can the…

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The best recent books about Richard Nixon

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