After reading the reviews of the new book about American politics, Game Change by John Heilemann and Mark Halperin in both the Financial Times and The Economist, I am anxiously awaiting the arrival of my copy. Like many around the world, I was caught up in the drama of the 2008 US Presidential Election. Therefore when a book with the title, Game Change: Obama and the Clintons, McCain and Palin and the Race of a Lifetime, came out, I knew I had to get a copy.
The review by Edward Luce in British newspaper, The Financial Times describes the book as a “guilty pleasure that transports you to a parallel universe in which everything in the National Enquirer is true.” Since its release the book has skyrocketed to the top of the bestsellers list at Amazon.com. As of January 20, 2010, there have been 343 reviews on Amazon.com alone. Judging from the reviews on Amazon, the main complaint has been the lack of a Kindle version of the book. Many Kindle owners feel as if they are being forced to buy the hard copy edition.
The big story of the book according to the reviews from the Financial Times and The Economist and the story that was broad cast a few weeks ago on the news program 60 Minutes is how incredibly uninformed about foreign affairs Sarah Palin was. To make matters worse, Palin was described as not only being uninformed, she was also described as being uninterested in becoming more informed. Some of the highlights included in the reviews I have seen describe Palin as stating that “Saddam Hussein launched the September 11th attacks”. The Financial Times describes a section of the book which talks about McCain’s senior staff members being “ridden with guilt over elevating Palin to within striking distance of the White House”. Personally, I have never been a Palin fan and can remember very clearly the shiver of fear that ran up my back when I first heard her speak during the Republican Convention. The fact that Palin was able to motivate the masses in the Republican Party, only fueled my fears. She is in my opinion a dangerous woman, who will fit in well at Fox News. It appears that the authors of this book may have held similar beliefs about Palin.
The other big story of the book is how bad both John Edwards and his wife Elizabeth were portrayed. According to one reviewer, Edwards is described as a “rampant narcissist whose grip on reality deteriorated as the campaign went on.” Elizabeth Edwards is described in an equally negative light as being hated by every staff member because of “her tendency to scream abuse at even the lowliest staff”.
Obama is said to be the only one who is not portrayed badly in the book, which is not surprising given that those who were part of a losing campaign tend to talk more openly than those of a winning campaign. I am anxiously awaiting my copy of Game Change which I should have in my hands by the end of this week. My review will be posted promptly.
The Financial Times