Pickle Farmer's Reviews > Game Change: Obama and the Clintons, McCain and Palin, and the Race of a Lifetime

Game Change by John Heilemann
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's review
Mar 17, 2012

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Read from March 17 to 25, 2012

This book was an entertaining read; it was like watching a really trashy soap opera. I felt like this book was arguably very gossipy in some sections (I must admit though it was still fun to read). I am highly suspicious of the authors not providing an appendix at the end to discuss their sources for each chapter, a la Woodward. It's like, it's fine if you want to steal Woodward's free indirect style--I have no complaints with that, it makes it super fun to read, but c'mon: as a reporter, you gotta cite your sources! Especially if you're writing italicized sentences like "Hilary thought" or "Obama thought."

This book made me really glad that Obama won the presidency. It was interesting to read the discussion of how many Democrats were afraid of another "poisionous" or "dysfunctional" (a commonly used term) atmosphere of another four-year Clintonian White House reign. This book makes it sound like a lot of Democrats were just plain sick of the Clintons, and were ready for something new.

The best section of the book is in the Obama vs. McCain one, in which McCain suspends his election run to head back to the White House and like, negotiate with Bush about how to deal with the economic crisis. I remember thinking "WTF?" when that happened in real life, and this book reveals how truly ridiculous and incompetent that move was. In many ways this book is a nice walk down memory lane, remembering all these different crazy things that provided a nice distraction when I was writing my undergraduate thesis in 2008.

I also didn't like how this book used the word "squawked" a lot when referring to how Hilary Clinton talked.

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