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All Too Human

3.81  ·  Rating details ·  3,048 Ratings  ·  174 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 January 1st 1999)
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Jan 17, 2009 rated it really liked it
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
Jul 28, 2017 rated it liked it
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 Stephanopoulos 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
Oct 02, 2007 rated it liked it
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
Jul 23, 2011 rated it it was amazing
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
Oct 21, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
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
Jim B
Feb 20, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history, memoir
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Amy Hillis
Sep 07, 2009 rated it really liked it
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
Jul 02, 2017 rated it liked it
**Spoiler Alert

"All Too Human" by  George Stephanopoulos serves as a young yet powerful political consultant's experience inside the presidential administration of former United States President Bill Clinton. The presentation is largely early presidential career biography with firsthand storytelling for Stephanopoulos in his early 30's, from transition to the 1992 campaign for president through much of Clinton's first of two terms as United States President in 1996. This book gives insight into
Joanie Sompayrac
Nov 26, 2017 rated it liked it
Apparently I bought this book almost 18 years ago, then forgot I had it. During some recent cleaning, I found it and decided to read it. I must admit up front, I LOVE George Stephanopoulos, much to the chagrin of my right-wing husband who cannot abide him. That said, I enjoyed the inside look at the first Bill Clinton Presidential campaign and the story of George's experience of working in the White House. While I found many of the stories intriguing, some of the writing jumped around so much, t ...more
Heidi Thorsen
Jun 14, 2017 rated it it was ok
I might have found this more interesting had I read it closer to the publication date. Now, so many decades removed from the action described, I'd read about events with an, "oh yeah, I kind of recall reading something about that in the news" thought instead of a more enlightened reaction.

Nevertheless, I thought this book was interesting because of the young age at which Stephanopoulos was influential within the White House. So many memoirs are written by retired men reviewing their career duri
Dean Cummings
Dec 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
After reading George Stephanopoulos' "All Too Human" I am certain that the five years he spent as Chief Adviser to Bill Clinton were the equivalent of riding on the tail of a speeding comet as it streaked across the political skies.

As I read, I was amazed how Stephanopoulos, the accomplished "Spin Doctor" was capable of telling a gritty, authentic and genuine feeling story. Every chapter was filled with well described "scenes" from the Clinton presidency.

A very well written biography that I'm
Nov 24, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 20th-century-us
My biggest complaint with the book is that I also purchased the audiobook which turned out to be an abridged version. I was interesting to hear George Stephanopoulos read his own memoir. With the detail cut out, some of what was left didn't flow well, but overall it was a good book.
Lillian Hollar
Oct 31, 2017 rated it really liked it
Fascinating... a screenplay waiting to be written.
Jenni V.
Mar 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: i-own
review to come...
Dec 05, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very good. A close look at inside White House.
Geoffrey Nutting
May 17, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Valuable now for how politics at this level works.
Oct 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Behind the scenes of President Bill Clinton.
Frank Stein
Sep 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Early in the book, Bill Clinton tells George Stephanopoulos that the reason he hired him as his communications director was because he has a good "bullshit detector." Fortunately, that is also an incredibly useful trait in writing a good memoir. In this book, George (it's easier to type) shows that he has an almost preternatural sense for people's virtues and vices, as well as their emotional and intellectual lives. Obviously Clinton during his presidency is a rich subject for such a skilled obs ...more
May 19, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: politics, memoirs
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
Kevin Kirkhoff
Jan 31, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: politics
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,
Phillip Ozdemir
Jun 03, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is a well-written and informative book which offers a panoramic, behind-the-scenes look at the Clinton Presidency. It is a well-organized book which delivers on its promise to explain what might be Eleusinian mysteries otherwise. It is told, it seems to me, with the best of intentions: not to settle any scores or garner additional fame for the author, but merely to provide an accurate historical record. The scenes are crisp, the writing clear and lucid, and it is woven together with dexteri ...more
Joe Juarez
Dec 06, 2012 rated it it was amazing
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
Jan 10, 2009 rated it really liked it
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
David Tracey
Dec 04, 2012 rated it really liked it
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
Mar 28, 2012 rated it it was amazing
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
Dec 27, 2013 rated it really liked it
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
Jan 09, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
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
Jodi Varian
Feb 10, 2017 rated it liked it
This was a good read. Gives a great account of George Stephanopolous working for the Clintons. Clinton's presidency was the first presidency I paid attention to as a young adult. This gave some great insight into the Clinton presidency and what Stephanopolous endured while working for and believing in the Clintons.
Amy Coleman
Apr 04, 2014 rated it really liked it
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
Jan 12, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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
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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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