from the dust jacket of the 1962 Doubleday first edition
In 1914, Dorothy Aimesley, the seventeen-year-old daughter of a Pennsylvania lawyer, opened the front door of her house and saw Benjamin Renwell Holt for the first time, "... a young giant, eyes like blue stone and light brown hair in a great rumpled mass that he tried to comb, but unsuccessfully, a mass of arm and shoulder to fill the whole doorway..."
So begins the story of Ben Holt, who believed in power and little else, of Dorothy Aimesley, who loved him, of Alvin Cuter who helped shape his image -- and of dozens of others, whose lives were changed, directed, bent, broken, fulfilled by the rising force and ambition of a man of destiny.
Ben Holt was a coal miner, but the coal he mined had a deeper meaning than its plain substance. Coal was power, and Ben Holt linked his life to power as he fought his way from the bottom to the top. Howard Fast tells the story of Benjamin Renwell Holt -- and of a hundred others whose lives were linked to his. Here is the story of a man who built a labor movement unlike any other the world has ever known, who fought against great power but loved the taste of what he fought, who fought with guns, strikes, ballots, and with his own fiery personality -- to a strange and unexpected victory.
Power is a novel to savor and remember -- a part of the history of our times, a love story and an adventure story, a story full of excitement, passion and humanity -- a story that will hold you through every page. It is conceived out of the knowledge of a man who has seen and lived through a great deal, and it is written with the impact and beauty of prose and restraint that have marked the work of Howard Fast.