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Getting It Right: A Novel

3.49  ·  Rating Details  ·  89 Ratings  ·  16 Reviews
Getting It Right has all the Buckley trademarks—wit, passion, and a heady view of political life. It is a riveting story and an original contribution to the history of the postwar America.
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published January 1st 2003 by Regnery Publishing
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Dec 30, 2013 Gene rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This novel was a clever idea. WFB portrayed two historical tangents from conventional conservatism by having the reader see them through the eyes of devotees who eventually are disillusioned by the shortcomings of these philosophies. One was a member of the John Birch Society and one was a staff member who worked for Ayn Rand and helped her in the promotion of Objectivism. Both characters were very likable and Buckley has them fall in love and grapple with each other's political and philosophica ...more
Oct 20, 2012 Peter rated it really liked it
Shelves: politics, fiction
Here is William Buckley's fictionalized telling of the beginnings of the modern conservative movement, and there is no better guide than Buckley. Buckley shaped the modern conservative movement by bringing together a collection of different groups - economic libertarians, anti-big government people, anti-communists, etc. He in part did this with the creation of his magazine, the National Review. With the magazine he provided a home; often a conflict filled home, for these different ideas work wo ...more
Mar 05, 2013 George rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobooks

“My, how they loved to talk about things, the Randians.”

I absolutely (guiltily?) loved this ‘novel’ and can only wonder why it took me ten years, after its publication, to discover it.

Listening to GETTING IT RIGHT: A NOVEL, by William F. Buckley, Jr., was like listening to a highlight reel of one of the most vital and fascinating decades of my life (mid-1950s to mid-1960s). Those were ‘heady’ times, peopled by ‘bigger-than-life’ characters, and rife with ‘earth-shattering’ events. All o
Getting it Right is a political history disguised as a love story, both tales told amid the radically shifting political climate of America's 1960s, as Americans reacted to the growing global power of the Soviet Union and the increasing role of government in their own lives. Woodroe Raynor is an earnest young Mormon whose narrow escape from Russian soldiers invading Hungary cements his contempt for the Soviet Union, who finds similarly zealous spirits in the nascent John Birch Society. Leonora ...more
Rick Hill
Apr 09, 2016 Rick Hill rated it really liked it
Much easier read than my last one. I wanted to do a little bit more investigation into Objectivism, and I figured that reading about the clash between Ayn Rand and National Review would be a good place to go. I have to admit, however, that Buckley is not as good of a fiction writer as he is with nonfiction or essays. His characters are not developed well, and more parts of the conflict could have been covered. However, there is virtue in brevity, and I still found it entertaining and stimulating ...more
Aug 16, 2011 Annette rated it it was ok
GETTING IT RIGHT is historical fiction and more historical than fiction, hence, only two stars. To understand or have the determination to wade through to the end, a reader likely needs to have a significant knowledge of the time period in which the story is set.

Having lived through the 60's, I am familiar with many of the names (William Buckley, Eisenhower, Barry Goldwater, Robert Welch, Ayn Rand, Edwin Walker, President John Kennedy, Attorney General Robert Kennedy, President Johnson, etc.),
Sep 25, 2015 Julie rated it really liked it
"Getting it Right" is a novel, but its protagonists are living in the sixties, and the juxtaposition of the John Birch Society and Ayn Rand's Objectivist movement are very detailed. I lived in the sixties, but I was apolitical at the time, and was unaware of serious issues. Today I am feeling quite intellectual!
Helene Slowik
Feb 02, 2015 Helene Slowik rated it it was ok
Shelves: oprf-book-club
ponderous, pretentious - kind of hated it but not totally
Mar 04, 2008 Gail rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2008
I thought I'd read something of William F. Buckley Jr's since he recently passed away. The book is a fascinating story about the beginnings of neoconservativism (written as a novel but using real happenings and people). Who knew Ayn Rand was such a crazy slut??? (That Ann Coulter woman must be channeling Ayn Rand.) I always liked Buckley though...he was a sailor, how bad could he have been?
I learned a lot about the John Birch Society -- Oswald tried to kill a Bircher before he killed Kennedy? Co
Robert Jones
Mar 24, 2009 Robert Jones rated it did not like it
I felt like the ash tray on front of the book. I wanted to cry it was so bad.

It was like watching your favorite sports figure come out of retirement and suck.

Except Buckley never retired. Read this only if you feel you must. Then let me know if I am being a judgmental jerk.

Then ill burn you with my cig.
Jul 30, 2012 Kevin rated it liked it
Historical fiction from WFB. I knew he read the Birchers and Randians out of the party when he was at top of conservative movement in 1960s but I didn't know why. This gives some of that story, albeit in a fictionalized telling.
Feb 20, 2009 Brandon rated it it was ok
What was the point of having a Mormon main character? Just to have a conservative? He swears, drinks, has premarital sex, and maybe even smokes, if I remember correctly.
Steve Hemmeke
Aug 14, 2009 Steve Hemmeke rated it liked it
Good look into the forming political conservative movement in the 50s, avoiding conspiracy kooks and arrogant intellectuals.
Major Doug
Listened to this book: interesting example of historical fiction joinery.
Ezra Hood
it's Buckley-centric, but I bet it ain't bad history.
First Last
Nov 24, 2012 First Last rated it liked it
Not one of his best.
Wesley Mehl
Wesley Mehl marked it as to-read
Jun 04, 2016
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Katherine A. Lofrano marked it as to-read
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Jessica Angelini marked it as to-read
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George Hawley
George Hawley rated it it was ok
Apr 26, 2016
Joshua rated it liked it
Feb 17, 2016
Dan Badstubner
Dan Badstubner rated it really liked it
Jan 06, 2016
Dan Badstubner
Dan Badstubner rated it really liked it
Jan 05, 2016
Douglas Peckham
Douglas Peckham rated it it was amazing
Dec 30, 2015
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Charlie Roberts marked it as to-read
Dec 18, 2015
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William Frank Buckley, Jr. was an American author and conservative commentator. He founded the political magazine National Review in 1955, hosted 1,429 episodes of the television show Firing Line from 1966 until 1999, and was a nationally syndicated newspaper columnist. His writing style was famed for its erudition, wit, and use of uncommon words.

Buckley was "arguably the most important public int
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