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The Politician: An Insider's Account of John Edwards's Pursuit of the Presidency and the Scandal That Brought Him Down
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The Politician: An Insider's Account of John Edwards's Pursuit of the Presidency and the Scandal That Brought Him Down

3.42  ·  Rating Details ·  1,756 Ratings  ·  390 Reviews
“The greatest political saga, the one that has it all, that gets to the real heart of American politics, is the John Edwards story... This isn’t just politics, it’s literature. It’s the great American novel, the kind that isn’t written anymore.” --Michael Wolff on John Edwards's trajectory, on

The underside of modern American politics -- raw ambition, manipul
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published January 30th 2010 by Thomas Dunne Books (first published January 1st 2010)
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Bill  Kerwin
Mar 10, 2010 Bill Kerwin rated it liked it
Shelves: history, biography

I read this book as a penance: I donated to the Edwards presidential campaign, and I wanted to know how vile the man was who persuaded me to send him money. Pretty vile, it turns out. Viler than the fellow that wrote the book? I wouldn't be willing to bet on it.

I feel about this book similarly to how I felt about Peter Maas' "Underboss"--an "as told to" book by "Sammy the Bull" Gravano. I believed every horrible thing it says about John Gotti, but when Sammy swears he didn't whack his own brothe
Mar 28, 2010 Angie rated it liked it
One afternoon I was thumbing through TV shows and noticed Oprah interviewing a couple that I didn’t recognize. After watching for a few minutes I learned that the couple was Cheri and Andrew Young. Andrew was the former aid to John Edwards and was promoting the book he had written to clear his own name in regards to the scandal that brought Edwards’ political career down. What caught my attention was, to me, it seemed that Oprah was bullying the couple about the choices they had made. She mentio ...more
Nicholas Montemarano
Jan 16, 2012 Nicholas Montemarano rated it really liked it
Absolutely riveting. When you read this book, you will come to see John Edwards as a narcissistic, selfish, deceitful, greedy, power-hungry man who lost his way. You will come to view Elizabeth Edwards as power-hungry, controlling, and often ill-tempered. Andrew Young -- maybe it's his tone -- comes across as sincere. He makes the case that he made terrible choices, especially to pretend to have fathered Rielle Hunter's child, but that he did so because he believed in Senator Edwards and his vis ...more
Feb 02, 2010 Julie rated it liked it
John Edwards is a creep. I found Andrew Young to be believable, but did question a couple of items. I just can't believe he and his wife went along with such a crazy charade. It goes to show you what some people will do for power or to be close to someone in power. I just don’t understand how he could have still wanted Edwards as President since he clearly has shown he has no integrity or character.

I found this to be extremely disheartening because of what really happens behind the scenes as so
Mar 06, 2010 Catherine rated it liked it
Shelves: mainstream-us, 2010
There's an element of 'mea culpa' about this book - a certain degree to which Andrew Young wants the forgiveness of those near and dear to him, and the world at large, for his part in the John Edwards/Rielle Hunter debacle. Yet Young does not come out of this book looking good - he looks power-hungry, self-absorded, and gullible - and for that I give him some props. I'm sure he crafted his narrative to give him the maximum amount of cover, but there's just no good way to explain away how you pub ...more
Oct 06, 2010 Judy rated it liked it
I'll admit it, this book was a guilty pleasure. I've followed the John & Elizabeth Edwards Show with great interest for some time now and I've taken a certain satisfaction in watching the former senator's decline and fall. I've been hungry for more details and "The Politician" really dishes the dirt.

There are plenty of details to be read. As a political aide, Young saved everything. He shares emails from Mrs. Edwards, listing all the menial tasks Young has promised to perform at the Edwards'
Shallana Edwards
May 28, 2011 Shallana Edwards rated it really liked it
I couldn't put this book down. After reading "Game Change" I had to get to know more about what exactly happened to John Edwards that caused this downward spiral in his career & life. I thought I would really dislike John Edwards, but the person I most disliked immensely was his wife. Maybe it was a little bit of Andrew's obvious dislike for her, but she came off as the more ambitious, cold and calculating of the duo. John was as I expected, arrogant and stupid for cheating on his wife and t ...more
Thomas Edmund
Mar 24, 2010 Thomas Edmund rated it liked it
The Politician describes the beginning and end of Senator and presidential hopeful's scandal ridden political career. For most interested much the scandal is probably already known/supposed and this book will simple provide the insider info from aide/slave Andrew Young.

While the scandal is both interesting and horrifying, the first 200 pages of the work were a dull slog through Edward's earlier years in the senate, and 2004 presidential race. Young admits this himself, he has no prior writing sk
Aug 02, 2011 Cindy added it
So who is the sleaziest of them all? Andrew Young, that's who. His account of the rise and fall of John Edwards' political career is poorly-written--including typos--and paints a disgusting picture of a man and his wife willing to sell their souls for the chance to be attached to someone possibly headed for the White House.

The tales he tells about John and Elizabeth Edwards are really not shocking. A politician lying, having affairs, even the ill wife bit----been there, done that in U.S. politic
Jul 04, 2010 Teechbiz rated it really liked it
Forget the $400 hair cuts. John and Elizabeth possessed hubris and a great sense of entitlement.

Yes John there definitely were two Americas. One in which people have 1,000 square foot tree houses for their kids and fly private jets while the other has those "rednecks" and "little people" you didn't like mixing with.

Your mistress was right, "It's good to be king."
Carol Anne
Feb 09, 2010 Carol Anne rated it it was ok
I hate that I'm reading this! Both John Edwards and Andrew Young make me sick. I have to finish it now that I've started reading it!
Apr 12, 2013 Peter rated it it was amazing
A descent to the gates of Hell, it reads almost like a Grisham novel. "Get out," I urged at numerous places in Young's saga. Gotta go take a shower now.
Meighan O
Feb 13, 2010 Meighan O rated it really liked it
Fascinating, surprisingly well-written, frightening account. Recommend to any political junkie.
"I know I'm the people's senator, but do I have to hang out with 'em?" --presidential candidate John Edwards, bitching about attending state fairs

Andrew Young seems like a decent, kind, hardworking person . . . who once threatened to send media outlets a videotape of his boss having sex with a former colleague. Also, he depicts Elizabeth Edwards as vicious, paranoid, and mentally unstable . . . which she may well have been. Young claims to have copies of the e-mails and voicemails he quotes from
I've never been a fan of tell-all books. In this case, there are a few reasons why I chose to read Andrew Young's account of his work with and for John and Elizatbeth Edwards. First of all, I backed John Edwards early on, and I was curious to understand more about just what happened there. Second, I was impressed that Young was upfront about the fact that he wrote the book for the money. As my sister commented, after listening to Oprah's interview with Young, "Maybe you ought to buy the book jus ...more
Mar 26, 2012 Joanna rated it really liked it
This is a juicy behind the scenes account of the John Edwards scandal as recounted by "I Am/Not the Baby Daddy" Andrew Young. It's a gripping read, and it delivers a lot of dirt on John, Elizabeth, and Rielle.

It's fascinating to read as Andrew Young's side of the story unfolds, but also more than a little disconcerting. It's like the memoir of someone still suffering from vestigial Stockholm syndrome, as Andrew Young never once makes a compelling case for why the ends--in this case an Edwards pr
John Kennedy
Feb 02, 2010 John Kennedy rated it really liked it
While admittedly a kiss-and-tell self-centered book, this is an important story of the deception of a man who could have become president last year. It's a well-documented and written confessional by Young, who notes that he had to write a book to make money--his life and career have been ruined by John Edwards. There has been some history-making fallout since it's publication last month: Edwards finally admitted fathering the child of Rielle Hunter after two years and his wife Elizabeth has fil ...more
Feb 28, 2010 Jennifer rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2010
There are so many things I want to say about this book, but I don't even know where to begin.

First of all, Andrew Young was an idiot, but I think he recognizes that fact. He let his loyaly to John and Elizabeth Edawards rule his decision making, culminating in the most "You have GOT to be kidding me!!" decision of them all- letting himself take the fall for Edwards affair and child with Rielle Hunter. I don't begrudge him writing this book; as he said himself, his reputation is destroyed (partl
Feb 19, 2010 Kathleen rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Lori Kelley
Feb 16, 2010 Lori Kelley rated it liked it
A sad, tawdry and alarming tale of how close the corrupt and narcissistic John Edwards came to being in the highest seat of power. I never liked him, nor did I condone his running for president when his wife was terminally ill and this book simply validates everything I felt was "off" about him. There are no good guys (or gals) in this book, only selfish, misguided, power hungry and downright greedy individuals. Andrew Young does a credible job of portraying the events in an entirely authentic, ...more
May 06, 2012 Amy rated it it was ok
I have to admit that I read this book because I have been casually following the John Edwards' trial and the book was mentioned in one news story (and it only cost me $4.00 to download to my kindle). I thought that the book was a very interesting read and the author blatantly says that he wrote the book so that he could make money now that he is no longer employable (because of John Edwards). There were a few things about the story that bothered me, however: at one point the author relates the s ...more
Deborah Hart
Jul 28, 2010 Deborah Hart rated it really liked it
Although I knew most of what was in this book, I read it anyway! It boggles the mind at the audacity John Edward! He is just a narcissus! All the while touting his platform on helping the poor, he was driving a fake, beat up buick, while his BMW and other cars were in his garage, to appear to be more of a common man. All this time he and Mrs. Edwards are building their dream house and he is getting $400 haircuts from some guy in California! I have no problem with people spending their own money ...more
Mar 24, 2010 Anita rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction-read
This is a book with no heroes. I believe if you substitute spinelessness for sloth, you have all the deadly sins represented. I'm reminded that politics is a nasty business, you don't know about anybody unless you live with them, (and maybe not even then), appearance is everything, and it's amazing how people can be sucked in. I admired Elizabeth Edwards and John Edwards until the scandal struck. Now I'm one of the many duped by good ole boy charm and noble spouse support. The only character tha ...more
Oct 23, 2013 Brooke rated it really liked it
Fascinating, sickening, super juicy. I was totally sucked in. The only reason I'm not giving it 5 stars is because I don't know how I feel about the author. I can only imagine he stuck around and put up with so much because he liked the perks and money that come with being top aide to a high powered politician. I don't really buy that he was fueled by Edwards "vision." He seemed bitter in the book and like he was making excuses for himself or trying to convince you that he was a good guy while t ...more
Feb 14, 2010 Jean rated it really liked it
This book is filled with completely titillating gossip, and I really couldn't put it down. I felt disgusted by the political process and the players in it. Why the four stars then? After reading it, I realized that this book is one of the few I've read that tells the tale of the American Dream gone sour. The rampant lies, greed, and lust (for power and sex) break this man, family, and community. It's an insightful look into the American political system.
This book is like a bath scrub: I felt dir
Jun 13, 2010 Patti rated it really liked it
The author was involved in trying to cover up John Edward's affair with Rielle Hunter. He was even persuaded to claim to be the father of the baby. It was interesting reading how and why all this transpired. The story is so unreal you would think it had to be fiction. Unfortunately, it is not.
Wendi Olson
Feb 06, 2010 Wendi Olson rated it really liked it
Facinating inside look at politics - makes you think long and hard about the folks we elect to 'lead' us. I hope Andrew Young makes a MINT off this book.
Nathan Hurst
Feb 04, 2013 Nathan Hurst rated it really liked it
The kind of story you can't make up. Proof that reality can often be more twisted than the finest fiction.
Feb 04, 2010 Denise rated it liked it
Okay -- I admit it. I read this book. But I borrowed it from a friend! It really is an unbelievable, cautionary tale.
Feb 09, 2010 Jess rated it liked it
Reads like a story in a gossip magazine - totally crazy!
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Andrew Young is the author of The Politician, his insider account of John Edwards’ pursuit of the presidency. After earning a bachelors degree at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a law degree at the Wake Forest University School of Law, Young was a volunteer for John Edwards’ winning campaign for U.S. Senate. Hired in 1999, Young became Edwards’ longest serving and most trusted ...more
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