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All Too Human

3.78 of 5 stars 3.78  ·  rating details  ·  2,043 ratings  ·  136 reviews
All Too Human is a new-generation political memoir, written from the refreshing perspective of one who got his hands on the levers of awesome power at an early age. At thirty, the author was at Bill Clinton's side during the presidential campaign of 1992, & for the next five years he was rarely more than a step away from the president & his other advisers at every ...more
Paperback, 480 pages
Published March 1st 2000 by Back Bay Books (first published April 19th 1999)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Kurt
I was born in 1980, so I was a little too young to engage with the politics of the first Clinton administration. This book, though, by a talented communicator who blends a little Hollywood celebrity with some academic analyses of issues and campaign tactics, makes me feel like I have caught up on what I missed during my junior high years. Stephanopoulos gives us a candid look at his time on the campaign trail and in the White House, written after President Clinton's impeachment but before the de ...more
Kim
I would have given this 3 1/2 stars if that had been an option. For a conservative republican like myself, this might seem like a weird book choice, but I found it to be an interesting view of what went on in the Clinton White House. It didn't make me like the Clintons any more or less, but it helped give me a better understanding of who they are. I found Stephanopoulos surprisingly honest about his faults which I appreciated. Had the whole book been about how wonderful he was while working in t ...more
Vivek
Nov 22, 2007 Vivek rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: those interested in white house politics, Bill Clinton, or fans of "The West Wing"
George Stephanopoulos was an essential part of Bill Clinton's first presidential campaign, and of his white house staff during the first term. In this book, Stephanopoulos recounts what it was like being such a crucial adviser and his experiences working for the Clintons. There is also a bit in the beginning about about how George got into politics in the first place.

I found this book fascinating for the first half, and then it seemed to drag a little bit. But this reflects his experience - the
...more
Shawna
I was interested in learning about Clinton, as I was in high school when he first became President. At the time, I didn't really pay much attention to him, or his office.

This was an interesting perspective because it's written by a man on the inside. It actually confirmed much of what I believed about the Presidency: candidates can make many promises, but once in office, newfound knowledge can sometimes make it hard to follow through. In addition, this book is a good balance of the man and the
...more
Amy Hillis
I read this while pregnant with Abby (so 10+ years ago) and came across it again recently. I enjoyed this book immensely. It is well written, cleanly told, and you get such a beautiful insider's perspective on life in DC and how it can unravel a man and his soul. He paints his demise from a healthy idealist to a jaded, neurotic, depressed political aide so well, it reads like a novel.

To me, this is a political must-read for anyone who lived through and studied the Clinton-era. (Wait - with Hil a
...more
Victoria
In late 1991, 30 year old George Stephanopoulos joined President Bill Clinton's first presidential campaign. Over the next 5 years, Stephanopoulos held a position close to the presidency, from Communications Director to Special Counsel, placing him in the center of action in Washington. His memoir is a personal recollection of what happened on the campaign trail and in Clinton's first term: the good and the bad. From the fight to revitalize the economy and "put people first" to the Whitewater sc ...more
Amy Coleman
There was so much to enjoy in this - I flew through it. Descriptions of Bill and Hillary's relationship were real and fascinating and I loved how Stephanopolous freely acknowledged the effect of his work on his mental health. This was such a fascinating look into the interplay between Clinton's personal problems and his political goals - particularly interesting to read about Dick Morris's frightening influence over Clinton. I couldn't get through Clinton's autobiography of his time as President ...more
Erik
The Clinton presidency was the first which I paid much attention to, starting as it did when I was 15. For some reason Stephanopoulos was one of the characters whom I found interesting. Possibly the name, his age, the fact that he wasn't the usual old white guy. And possibly because of that I'm biased towards liking this book. It's very well written, the right length and delves into each episode with an amount of detail necessary to tell the tale, but not so much as to bore. And it's honest. He ...more
Jim B
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
John
Who is my favorite president? William Jefferson Clinton.

Stephanopoulos had a very close relationship with Clinton both before and during his election. As a person who has studied American Politics in depth, this inside look at a presidential campaign was both fun and exciting. Clinton is very much 'All Too Human' and I am thankful that Stephanopoulos had the courage to step away and write this book.

I was in 7th grade when Clinton ran for office. Even at that young age, I was in awe of his presen
...more
Kevin Kirkhoff
After a very brief synopsis of his childhood, this book follows George Stephanopoulos' political career from the 1991 Clinton campaign through his resignation shortly after the 1996 election. Most of the book deals with his recounting of events and circumstances. Still other parts deal with his thoughts on certain situations. It is important when reading the book to discern between the two. He tries to pass off these thoughts as factual. Among those thoughts are:
- Republicans are evil and nasty,
...more
Chris
All too Human could probably be boiled down to three words: Perception is reality. This is an intriguing and somewhat haunting account of the Clinton White House spin machine, starting with Stephanopoulos' days as a key figure in Clinton's 1992 campaign "War Room" and following through to his resignation shortly after the successful 1996 reelection campaign. Of particular interest was the book's epilogue, which describes the author's subsequent employment as an ABC analyst that essentially pitte ...more
Joe Juarez
George Stephanopoulos's "All Too Human: A Political Education" not only looks at his time with Bill Clinton's presidential administration; but the realization that the two-term president was a regular person with flaws.

Without reading Clinton's autobiography (which I will), I would have thought that his presidency was full of moments that would impact the United States; which it was. Remember when America had money? Remember when he wanted to focus on things that mattered like heatlh care, educa
...more
David Tracey
Well-written and personable book from an insider in the Clinton White House.

Stephanopoulos takes an admirably open approach to his own shortcomings, which is perhaps why he feels free to lace into the lecherous big wheel as the book progresses and the Clinton scandals add up. I found it fascinating to read his take on Clinton the man and the myth, and also how much energy staff put into managing a president's moods. (Clinton comes across as a world class crank with a chronic temper but also a c
...more
Laura
I really enjoyed this book! It's an informative as well as personal narrative of Stephanopoulos's experience as a senior advisor to President Clinton during his first term, including an epilogue where he describes observing with dismay the Monica Lewinsky scandal from outside the White House, as a journalist for ABC News. At times the book reads like a nonfictional version of "The West Wing" -- you certainly get an idea of just how many storylines from that show were based on events in the Clint ...more
Mata
Okay, maybe it should be three stars, it does drag a bit-- especially when he gets into the details. But otherwise, fascinating. He gives you a great glimpse into what it is like to work in the West Wing, the relationship between the White House and the media, and the relationship between the White House and the two parties. You also are privy how decisions were made, who played what role, and how individuals used the White House to push their individual agendas.

Ironically, the person who comes
...more
Doug
A fascinating political memoir of Stephanopoulos’s war room days and his tribulations as a "youngster" in the Clinton Whitehouse.

As I recall, the first time Stephanopoulos met Clinton, he was invited into the Arkansas Governor's mansion where Clinton was interviewing him to see if he should hire him as a staffer for the ’92 campaign. (Stephanopoulos had favored Cuomo, but began looking when it was evident he would not run). Clinton asked Stephanopoulos to follow him as they chatted. Clinton wen
...more
Ken Seeling
Not an overly interesting book but does provide some insight on how many decisions are made for strictly political reasons. The most interesting part doesn't come until near the end when George describes his interactions with Dick Morris. What a character!
Jennifer Boeyink
I loved this book. I'm not typically all that political and only picked this up on a whim because I thought he was cute, but from the very beginning I was intrigued by everything he wrote about his time in Washington.
Barbara
A fascinating, behind-the-scenes look at politics and the presidency. Having read this book I have a greater appreciation for how difficult, and complicated, it is for a president to keep his promises - and for legislation to get passed. And yet, candidates keep right on making those promises because they have to to get elected. No matter how hard a candidate might want to remain above the fray, politics truly is a sleezy game, and they all have to play. After reading this book I found myself le ...more
Karen
I did not like the book nor do I like George Staphanopoulos. A very dispassionate, unemotional rendering of his rise to the top of the food chain. I don't think George really felt any true affection for Bill Clinton. He savored his role as attack/guard dog of the President's image. Basically the story of Greek boy done good. It did not satisfy my craving for a better understanding of Bill Clinton the man nor did it provide the inside look at the daily life in the White House. Pompous at best wit ...more
Narcissa
George Stephanopoulos' account of his odyssey into Clintonmania also charts the fall (albeit a short one) of an icon. George (it's easier to refer to him this way - give me a break) is human and reports back what he sees with a human voice, detangling the political meanderings and meetings of the 90s with panache and humor. Reading "All Too Human" today makes my eyes water, remembering and wishing for a simpler time, when all we had to contend with were a few floozies. This book is great if you' ...more
Dot
Mar 02, 2014 Dot rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: memoirs
This book is by George Stephanopoulos, not Gregory N. Stephanopoulos as it says on Goodreads.
Gabriel Watson
An interesting read. Written well before the author became the media politico that we know today. His insight seems honest, his criticisms sincere, and his respect for the position of the President is authentic. Far too many seem to analyze from the outside, or from a point of bitterness within, neither is the case in this book. George seems equally as critical about his own shortcomings as he is about Clinton's, and whats more, he seems genuine in his evaluation of both. I enjoyed this book not ...more
Elizabeth
Interesting story, but surprisingly, could have been better written.
Shannon
Despite occasionally reading like First World Problems: White House Edition, All Too Human is fascinating. It's a nice insight into the Clinton campaigns/administration, coming across as honest without being too gossipy, which can be a problem with this sort of memoir. While it does get a little bit preachy towards the end, particularly for someone you'd assume would be empathetic to political scandals having experienced them first hand, overall it was very enjoyable. I'd recommend it to anyone ...more
Daniel Schiff
A candid and sophisticated political memoir.
Robert
Stephanopoulos may have since become just another typical MSM hack (his job of moderating, along with Charles Gibson, the primary debate between Hilary Clinton and Obama last April begat sharp, well-justified criticism for its focus on inane and substance-less questions about flag lapel pins, loving America, etc., etc.), but this is a seriously fascinating and quite well-written account of his turbulent 4 years in the Clinton White House. Color me impressed. What's happened to Stephanopoulos sin ...more
Keegan Chopin
VERY interesting
Ben
Good look at Clinton the man and Clinton the politician. Fills the West Wing void, the side of me that loves the insider look at politics.
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“I believe in original sin … I know that I’m capable of craving a cold beer in a village of starving kids … I understand that selfishness vies for space in our hearts with compassion …” 1 likes
“The thought of the president trying to concentrate on his delivery as gobbledygook whirred by his eyes made me sick with worry — for him and me. This screwup might not have been my fault, but it was my responsibility. ‘This is the worst thing that’s ever happened,’ I muttered. ‘I dunno,’ replied Mike Feldman, the vice president’s aide, ‘the Holocaust was pretty bad.’ Very funny.” 1 likes
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