From his boyhood in Ohio to his graduation from West Point, and then into detailed accounts of his service in the Mexican-American War, the Civil War, and his presidency, Grant gives a full report of his life and career in this excellent autobiography. Written in the last year of his life as he battled throat cancer and poverty, "Personal Memoirs" was published by Mark Twain shortly after Grant's death, less than a week after he completed his work. An instant success and praised by admirers, critics, and people throughout the country, this autobiography was a critical and financial success. Grant was praised both for the clarity and succinctness of his writing, and the royalties of the book provided for his family and firmly re-established their financial stability. A model of autobiography to this day, "Personal Memoirs" is a remarkable work of literature, reflecting the man and ideal commander largely responsible for the welfare of his country throughout his life.