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The mesmerizing story of Hillary Clinton's political rebirth, based on eyewitness accounts from deep inside her inner circle Hillary Clinton’s surprising defeat in the 2008 Democratic primary brought her to the nadir of her political career, vanquished by a much younger opponent whose message of change and cutting-edge tech team ran circles around her stodgy campaign. And y The mesmerizing story of Hillary Clinton's political rebirth, based on eyewitness accounts from deep inside her inner circle Hillary Clinton’s surprising defeat in the 2008 Democratic primary brought her to the nadir of her political career, vanquished by a much younger opponent whose message of change and cutting-edge tech team ran circles around her stodgy campaign. And yet, six years later, she has reemerged as an even more powerful and influential figure, a formidable stateswoman and the presumed front-runner for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination, marking one of the great political comebacks in history.    The story of Hillary’s phoenixlike rise is at the heart of HRC, a riveting political biography that journeys into the heart of “Hillaryland” to discover a brilliant strategist at work. Masterfully unfolded by Politico’s Jonathan Allen and The Hill’s Amie Parnes from more than two hundred top-access interviews with Hillary’s intimates, colleagues, supporters, and enemies, HRC portrays a seasoned operator who negotiates political and diplomatic worlds with equal savvy. Loathed by the Obama team in the wake of the primary, Hillary worked to become the president’s greatest ally, their fates intertwined in the work of reestablishing America on the world stage. HRC puts readers in the room with Hillary during the most intense and pivotal moments of this era, as she mulls the president-elect’s offer to join the administration, pulls the strings to build a coalition for his war against Libya, and scrambles to deal with the fallout from the terrible events in Benghazi—all while keeping one eye focused on 2016.   HRC offers a rare look inside the merciless Clinton political machine, as Bill Clinton handled the messy business of avenging Hillary’s primary loss while she tried to remain above the partisan fray. Exploring her friendships and alliances with Robert Gates, David Petraeus, Leon Panetta, Joe Biden, and the president himself, Allen and Parnes show how Hillary fundamentally transformed the State Department through the force of her celebrity and her unparalleled knowledge of how power works in Washington. Filled with deep reporting and immersive storytelling, this remarkable portrait of the most important female politician in American history is an essential inside look at the woman who may be our next president.


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The mesmerizing story of Hillary Clinton's political rebirth, based on eyewitness accounts from deep inside her inner circle Hillary Clinton’s surprising defeat in the 2008 Democratic primary brought her to the nadir of her political career, vanquished by a much younger opponent whose message of change and cutting-edge tech team ran circles around her stodgy campaign. And y The mesmerizing story of Hillary Clinton's political rebirth, based on eyewitness accounts from deep inside her inner circle Hillary Clinton’s surprising defeat in the 2008 Democratic primary brought her to the nadir of her political career, vanquished by a much younger opponent whose message of change and cutting-edge tech team ran circles around her stodgy campaign. And yet, six years later, she has reemerged as an even more powerful and influential figure, a formidable stateswoman and the presumed front-runner for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination, marking one of the great political comebacks in history.    The story of Hillary’s phoenixlike rise is at the heart of HRC, a riveting political biography that journeys into the heart of “Hillaryland” to discover a brilliant strategist at work. Masterfully unfolded by Politico’s Jonathan Allen and The Hill’s Amie Parnes from more than two hundred top-access interviews with Hillary’s intimates, colleagues, supporters, and enemies, HRC portrays a seasoned operator who negotiates political and diplomatic worlds with equal savvy. Loathed by the Obama team in the wake of the primary, Hillary worked to become the president’s greatest ally, their fates intertwined in the work of reestablishing America on the world stage. HRC puts readers in the room with Hillary during the most intense and pivotal moments of this era, as she mulls the president-elect’s offer to join the administration, pulls the strings to build a coalition for his war against Libya, and scrambles to deal with the fallout from the terrible events in Benghazi—all while keeping one eye focused on 2016.   HRC offers a rare look inside the merciless Clinton political machine, as Bill Clinton handled the messy business of avenging Hillary’s primary loss while she tried to remain above the partisan fray. Exploring her friendships and alliances with Robert Gates, David Petraeus, Leon Panetta, Joe Biden, and the president himself, Allen and Parnes show how Hillary fundamentally transformed the State Department through the force of her celebrity and her unparalleled knowledge of how power works in Washington. Filled with deep reporting and immersive storytelling, this remarkable portrait of the most important female politician in American history is an essential inside look at the woman who may be our next president.

30 review for HRC: State Secrets and the Rebirth of Hillary Clinton

  1. 5 out of 5

    Kay

    This is definitely a part of a genre I'll call Pulp Politico -- books written on a fairly quick turnaround about near-recent history that largely chronicle already-written reports but sprinkle in some leftover factoids from reporters notebooks and embargoed-until-after-I-leave-my-job interviews. I will confess that this genre as a whole is sort of terrible. But I read this book anyway. The entire premise of this book is that Hillary Rodham Clinton -- HRC, as she intentionally begins branding hers This is definitely a part of a genre I'll call Pulp Politico -- books written on a fairly quick turnaround about near-recent history that largely chronicle already-written reports but sprinkle in some leftover factoids from reporters notebooks and embargoed-until-after-I-leave-my-job interviews. I will confess that this genre as a whole is sort of terrible. But I read this book anyway. The entire premise of this book is that Hillary Rodham Clinton -- HRC, as she intentionally begins branding herself -- is not only running for president in 2016 but is also going to be the Democratic nominee and possibly the president, so we care about her time as Secretary of State. This is actually a more interesting premise than I thought it was going to be. After all, the book goes out of its way to discuss Clinton's path through the public eye and its relationship to her husband. Clinton's public life up until her position as secretary of state, like it or not, was largely defined by her husband. Somehow she managed to escape this when she became Secretary Clinton. The book traces the path from Obama opponent to member of a "team of rivals" to her position as the party's preeminent nominee. There are some obvious things the book touches on: 1) Team Hillary and Team Obama really didn't care for one another, and they allowed petty personnel decisions to get in the way of actual policy sometimes. 2) Clinton is a hawk, and a decisive one at that. She pushed harder for the bin Ladin raid behind closed doors than almost anyone else, and often urged the president toward action at times when he seemed undecided. 3) Everything they say about Clinton's workaholic nature is completely true. Obama often worried over her inability to unplug. 4) She certainly thought about her public persona, how to improve it and brand it. Decades of experience in the public eye has taught her how to seize a moment. There are, of course, some lessons to be taken from this, but I'm not particularly sure it says that much about what kind of president Clinton would be. It is, of course, easier to take a strong position when you're one person among many trying to make your case to the person deciding. This book also played into some unfortunate sexist tropes: referring to women as the color of their hair and even titling a chapter "Obama Girl" (ick). Still, props for having a female co-author on one of these Pulp Politico books. I don't feel like I learned all that much about HRC, but it did force me to reflect on her time as secretary of state -- and to realize that for all the words written about her, we may never truly understand this woman.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Scott Rhee

    The Hillary-haters and conspiracy theorists love to throw around the term “career politician” nowadays with the same disgust and loathing that most people use with the term “pedophile”, which is probably really unfair to pedophiles. Joking aside, I understand people’s frustration with the status quo politicians in Washington, D.C. I sympathize with the need for radical change. I get it. That’s why I supported Bernie Sanders. It’s also why a lot of people support Donald Trump. Then, Hillary Clinton The Hillary-haters and conspiracy theorists love to throw around the term “career politician” nowadays with the same disgust and loathing that most people use with the term “pedophile”, which is probably really unfair to pedophiles. Joking aside, I understand people’s frustration with the status quo politicians in Washington, D.C. I sympathize with the need for radical change. I get it. That’s why I supported Bernie Sanders. It’s also why a lot of people support Donald Trump. Then, Hillary Clinton won the Democratic nomination, and, while she wasn’t my first choice, I decided to support her because she has the potential to be a good president, especially if she maintains the ideals of the current party platform which Sanders helped to establish as well as avoiding the pitfalls that Obama ran into in terms of being unable to bridge the partisan divide. So, in answer to your next question: yes, I am voting for the party and not necessarily for the person. But I’m also voting for Hillary, the person, because you can’t just vote for an ideal or a platform. I’m voting for Hillary because I truly believe that she will maintain the ideals of the platform or at least try, because she’s savvy enough to know that the country’s eyes and the eyes of the millions of progressive Bernie supporters are on her, making sure she will be accountable. I’m voting for Hillary because she has a track record for successfully working both sides of the aisle, unlike Obama, and I have a pretty good feeling that she will have far less stonewalling this time around. I’m voting for Hillary because I’d rather have a career politician than a man who admits---on live TV---that he doesn’t pay taxes and that he’s proud of it. I’m voting for Hillary because I have yet to hear anyone answer---not just adequately but AT ALL---the question of what crimes she is allegedly guilty. I am voting for Hillary because she has been a tireless supporter of children’s rights, women’s rights, and civil rights since her law school days. She has evolved on some issues, such as LGBQT rights, and while I don’t agree with her on everything (she’s more hawkish and pro-military than I’d prefer), I don’t see any issue that she supports that is a deal-breaker for me. She’s not a perfect candidate, certainly, but no candidate is. She is, however, in my opinion, far superior in every way to Trump. Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes’ 2014 book “HRC: State Secrets and the Rebirth of Hillary Clinton” is an objective (for the most part) in-depth examination of Hillary Clinton’s job performance as the second most powerful person in the U.S. government after the president, covering primarily her four years as Secretary of State. It’s a decent follow-up to Don Van Natta Jr. and Jeff Gerth’s 2007 book “Her Way: The Hopes and Ambitions of Hillary Clinton”, which was a less in-depth, more broad overview of Hillary’s life up until her failed 2008 presidential run. “HRC” basically picks up where “Her Way” left off. Allen/Parnes tells a pretty detailed journalistic account of Hillary’s actions, starting with her run for the presidency and subsequent dropping out of the race, her reluctance to commit to accepting the Secretary of State position at first, and her many trips to the 112 countries she visited as SecState. (She was the most-travelled Secretary of State in history until John Kerry broke her record.) All of this reportage is well and good, if a bit dry. While it’s insightful to read about how Hillary learned to use technology to her advantage, helped to promote women’s rights in countries like Burma and Pakistan, and was integral in the plan to assassinate Osama bin Laden, I think most readers were sloughing their way through this stuff to get to the part they really wanted to know about: Benghazi. Let’s be honest: Benghazi is, unfortunately, the only issue that seems to matter in the minds of most Hillary-haters. I won’t even get into the e-mail scandals (and Allen/Parnes don’t bring it up at all in the book, probably owing to the fact that the “scandals” didn’t break until after publication. Still, if you’re interested in reading about the hypocrisy of the Republicans and the 22 million deleted e-mails under George W. Bush’s presidency, check out this: http://www.pbs.org/weta/washingtonwee...) and I refuse to dignify the ridiculous conspiracy theories that surround Hillary, such as the one that suggests that Hillary has killed more than 30 people, which probably makes her one of the most successful serial killers in history, considering she has gotten away with it this long and built a pretty impressive political career despite the fact. The sad truth is Benghazi was a horrible tragedy that resulted in the senseless loss of four American lives, a tragedy that was utilized for political reasons during an election year. Mistakes were made by many people in the State Department and misinformation was given to the public shrouded as fact. Whether intentional or simply bad information at the time is almost irrelevant. Even Hillary acknowledges this. She has said, on record, that she takes responsibility for the tragedy. It’s not enough, though, for many people. Critics and Hillary-haters want to see her burn for the tragedy, despite the fact that more embassy attacks and deaths occurred under George W. Bush’s watch than Obama’s, and no one ever questioned or attacked Bush to the extent that Hillary has been attacked. (http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-met...) What I, personally, have come to conclude is that when horrible shit like this happens, it’s natural to want to find someone to blame, and if criminal wrongdoing or negligence was the real reason, an in-depth investigation is necessary for bringing the truth out. When 9/11 happened, and in the years afterwards, I wanted to blame the Bush Administration, and I did, vociferously. I hated Bush with a passion, because I honestly believed that he---and everyone in his administration---was asleep at the wheel for the first nine months of his first term. When the U.S. entered the Iraq War, I honestly believed that Bush/Cheney et al had lied to the American people to create momentum for getting involved in the war. I was for impeachment. I was for having them face imprisonment for war crimes. To some extent, I still am. But, as time passes and as I think about the stresses and challenges that a president faces on a daily basis, I now honestly believe that there are some things that no amount of preparation can withstand. Some things just happen so quickly that once it starts it’s impossible to stop. Could things have been done differently? Should there have been a stronger response to credible intelligence reports warning about potential problems? Of course, in hindsight, the answer is always “yes”. Unfortunately, presidents don’t have precognition. They aren’t endowed with superpowers. They are human. Has Hillary made mistakes? Yes. Has she owned up to them, and is she probably more prone to taking cautious, pre-emptive measures in the future to prevent similar mistakes? I believe that she has, and that she will. HRC isn’t the perfect candidate but, in truth, no candidate is ever perfect. She is, for better or worse, my candidate.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Cora

    In brief: this is a fly-on-the-wall journalistic account of Hillary Clinton from the end of the 2008 primary campaign to the present, with the focus being on a (likely) presidential run in 2016. The focus of the book is (a) her improving personal relationship with Obama after the extended primary fight; (b) her strategy to reposition herself as a unifying candidate within the Democratic Party (which seems to be entirely successful); and (c) her management style at the State Department and politi In brief: this is a fly-on-the-wall journalistic account of Hillary Clinton from the end of the 2008 primary campaign to the present, with the focus being on a (likely) presidential run in 2016. The focus of the book is (a) her improving personal relationship with Obama after the extended primary fight; (b) her strategy to reposition herself as a unifying candidate within the Democratic Party (which seems to be entirely successful); and (c) her management style at the State Department and political maneuvering in the Obama White House. HRC isn't so much a foreign policy book, and large swathes of first term Obama policy are treated lightly (for example, the reset with Russia, the pivot towards Asia, etc.). This is a shame because I personally would have like to hear what the next Democratic nominee has to say about, for example, counter-terrorism policy or the NSA program. But there are other books about Obama's foreign policy and I thought that there was plenty of information in HRC that was interesting to me. I was interested in the deliberate campaign by the Clintons to punish those who endorsed Obama during the primary; this recieved a lot of hyperbole in the media ('Hillary's enemies list' and so forth), because the timing of the book's release encouraged a facile comparison with Chris Christie's expanding scandals; but thankfully Allen and Amie Parnes don't indulge in that kind of nonsense in their narrative. The 'enemies list' in question is a large Excel spreadsheet of supporters and opponents in the 2008 primary, which included a 1 - 7 scale of betrayal and markers for extenuating circumstances (like if an Obama supporter was a member of the Illinois congressional delegation or the Congressional Black Caucus). From then on, the Clintons deliberately weighed in on Democratic primaries to punish opponents and support allies. For example, Kathleen Kane, Pennsylvania's attorney general, won the nomination over Congressman (and Obama supporter) Patrick Murphy with the prominent support of Bill Clinton. Kane is young and popular and polls well against Senator Pat Toomey, suggesting that she could be a powerful friend to the Clintons for years to come. What's remarkable about this campaign that the Clintons were able to carry it out for the past six years without endangering HRC's above-the-fray image or jeopardzing the near-unverisal support she has in the Democratic establishment. It speaks volumes about her political adroitness that she could square that circle. Similarly, Hillary was a formidable inside player in the Obama White House. You could say, with some justice, that Hillary Clinton played a subordinate role in Obama's foreign policy--one reason why the coverage in this book is a little light--but the same has been true of countless Secretaries of State in the postwar era. But Clinton was uniquely influential among Cabinet members, both in her ability to ally with other players like Defense Secretary Robert Gates to influence policy and in her ability to staff State with her loyalists, not Obama's. (The book really reveals the degree to which Obama allowed Hillary to build up her 2016 campaign as the price of peace within the Democratic party.) HRC isn't an essential read, certainly, and I can't imagine it has much appeal outside of people who are addicted to this kind of fly-on-the-wall political journalism; but I found it interesting as a contemporary potrait of a woman who may well be President three years from now.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Jason Recio

    Hillary Clinton is one of the most polarizing figures in American history, and unless you haven't paid attention over the last 20 years or just don't care, it's hard to judge anything written about her without any bias. The best thing about this books is if you love or hate her, you'll find a lot to love and hate about her here. From her relationship with President Obama to turning the State Department into a vehicle for smart power to the Clinton machine punishing all who crossed her in 2008 to Hillary Clinton is one of the most polarizing figures in American history, and unless you haven't paid attention over the last 20 years or just don't care, it's hard to judge anything written about her without any bias. The best thing about this books is if you love or hate her, you'll find a lot to love and hate about her here. From her relationship with President Obama to turning the State Department into a vehicle for smart power to the Clinton machine punishing all who crossed her in 2008 to her handling of Benghazi, there's no shortage of new and old information about one of the most important people of our time. Personally she's my favorite current politician so I thought all the stories about her were awesome. Especially how she essentially used Bill Clinton as a surrogate to settle all family business in 2012. LIKE A BOSS. Four stars. #readyforhillary

  5. 5 out of 5

    Ed Wagemann

    Can someone convince me that Hillary Clinton is NOT a Republican? She was Raised as a Conservative and actively Campaigned for Republicans in high school and college: ~Hillary was raised in a politically conservative household. At age thirteen she helped canvass South Side Chicago following the very close 1960 U.S. presidential election. ~Hillary's early political development was shaped most by her high school history teacher (like her father, a fervent anticommunist), who introduced her to Goldwa Can someone convince me that Hillary Clinton is NOT a Republican? She was Raised as a Conservative and actively Campaigned for Republicans in high school and college: ~Hillary was raised in a politically conservative household. At age thirteen she helped canvass South Side Chicago following the very close 1960 U.S. presidential election. ~Hillary's early political development was shaped most by her high school history teacher (like her father, a fervent anticommunist), who introduced her to Goldwater's classic The Conscience of a Conservative. ~Hillary became a Goldwater Girl, volunteering to campaign for Republican candidate Barry Goldwater in the U.S. presidential election of 1964. ~In 1965, Rodham enrolled at Wellesley College, where she majored in political science. There, she served as president of the Wellesley Young Republicans, where she supported the elections of Republicans like John Lindsay and Edward Brooke. ~Hillary's professor Alan Schechter assigned Hillary to intern at the House Republican Conference. Hillary attended the "Wellesley in Washington" summer program. ~Hillary was invited by moderate New York Republican Representative Charles Goodell to help Governor Nelson Rockefeller's late-entry campaign for the Republican nomination in 1968. ~Hillary attended the 1968 Republican National Convention in Miami as a supporter of Nelson Rockefeller. ~Hillary senior thesis was a critical exploration of the tactics of radical community organizer Saul Alinsky. He professional career revolved around corporate investment: ~Hillary became a savvy business investor and in fact earned a higher salary than that of her husband from 1978 until 1992. She made a spectacular profit from trading cattle futures contracts by investing $1,000 that generated nearly $100,000 when she stopped trading after ten months. ~Hillary incorporated the Whitewater Development Corporation on June 18, 1979, with the purpose of developing vacation properties on 230 acres of land along the White River near Flippin, Arkansas. The Clintons lost their late-1970s investment in the Whitewater Development Corporation at the same time, their partners in that investment, Jim and Susan McDougal, operated Madison Guaranty, a savings and loan institution that retained the legal services of Rose Law Firm (where Hillary was a partner) that was improperly subsidizing Whitewater losses. ~Hillary was a partner at Rose Law Firm while she was First Lady of Arkansas - pulling in $200,000 in her final year there. She was also very influential in the appointment of state judges and Bill Clinton's Republican opponent in his 1986 gubernatorial reelection campaign accused her of a conflict of interest. ~She was twice named by the National Law Journal as one of the 100 most influential lawyers in America: in 1988 and in 1991 ~Hillary held positions on the corporate board of directors of several corporations: TCBY (1985–1992), Wal-Mart Stores (1986–1992) and Lafarge (1990–1992). ~Hillary participated in crafting Wal-Mart's famously anti-labor union practices. As first Lady, she was the subject of several investigations by the United States Office of the Independent Counsel and several committees of the U.S. Congress for her unethical behavior: ~Scrutiny of the May 1993 firings of the White House Travel Office employees, an affair that became known as "Travelgate", began with charges that the White House had used audited financial irregularities in the Travel Office operation as an excuse to replace the staff with friends from Arkansas. The 2000 final Independent Counsel report concluded she was involved in the firings and that she had made "factually false" statements. ~During the Whitewater investigation Hillary's work as a partner at Rose Law Firm was scrutinized for a possible conflict of interest in representing the bank before state regulators that her husband had appointed. Independent counsels Robert Fiske and Kenneth Starr subpoenaed Clinton's legal billing records; she said she did not know where they were, however the records were found in the First Lady's White House book room and delivered to investigators in early 1996 ~on January 26, 1996, Hillart became the first First Lady to be subpoenaed to testify before a Federal grand jury ~In June of 1996 discovery of improper White House access to hundreds of FBI background reports on former Republican White House employees were made public. Accusations by the Independent Council were that Hillary had requested the files. As a Senator she was unethical in siding with corporate/wall street interests: ~In her campaign for Senator, Hillary was labeled a carpetbagging by NY residents since she had never resided in New York nor participated in the state's politics before this race ~Hillary suddenly found religion and became regular participant in the Senate Prayer Breakfast. ~Still obsessed with corporate profits, Hillary served on the Committee on Budget ~She voted for the USA Patriot Act in October 2001 and then voted for it Again In 2005, when the act was up for renewal (despite the civil liberties concerns with it that liberals had) ~Hillary strongly supported the 2001 U.S. military action in Afghanistan ~Hillary voted in favor of the October 2002 Iraq War Resolution, which authorized President George W. Bush to use military force against Iraq ~In 2005 Hillary introduced legislation to increase the size of the regular United States Army by 80,000 soldiers ~Along with Senator Joe Lieberman, Hillary introduced the Family Entertainment Protection Act, intended to censor makers of video games ~Hillary spent $36 million for her reelection, more than any other candidate for Senate in the 2006 elections, causing several Democrats to criticize her ~In the financial crisis of 2007–2008 reached a peak, Hillary supported the bailout of "too big to fail" financial institution and voted in favor of the $700 Bail out, saying that it represented the interests of the American people. ...So can someone tell me what the difference between Hillary and a Republican is???

  6. 4 out of 5

    Amber

    This is a book by political wonks for political wonks. This book covers Clinton's defeat to Obama, her time as Secretary of State and then includes information about how she is surely though subtly running for president in 2016. There is a lot of coverage of the Benghazi incident/attack and coverage of some her work during her four years in that position. If you're not interested in the minutiae of politics, if you're not a fan of Mrs. Clinton, or dislike reading a book based entirely on here-s This is a book by political wonks for political wonks. This book covers Clinton's defeat to Obama, her time as Secretary of State and then includes information about how she is surely though subtly running for president in 2016. There is a lot of coverage of the Benghazi incident/attack and coverage of some her work during her four years in that position. If you're not interested in the minutiae of politics, if you're not a fan of Mrs. Clinton, or dislike reading a book based entirely on here-say, this might not be a good fit for you. The book is well researched given its limitations, but does presume that you as a reader are very familiar with the Clintons and with the political machine as well. I would not recommend this for someone who sort of likes Clinton (yes I call her Clinton, not Hillary, show some damn respect I swear, when will women be given the respect that men do in that regard) as your first book or look into her life. Start off with her bio and then work up from there, so you can better appreciate her strengths and actions. On a side note, if I never again see the word "Hillaryland", a word I guess used to denote the fantasy, the Disneyland spectacle that encompasses working for her, well I'll be a happy woman. (I was a Goodreads first reads winner)

  7. 5 out of 5

    Peter Cohron

    A book written merely to make HRC look good and prep her run for the presidency. I think even Democrats will find it hard to swallow, a whitewash of her problems and defeats and a raucous trumpeting of her successes.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Toni Daugherty

    I knew she was powerful and experienced. I had no idea how experienced. She certainly is prepared more than any other potential candidate. No one can deny she isn't ready for it, but I don't blame her if she doesn't take the job. I'm not sure the people of this country deserve her hard work. I'm grateful this influential couple has not switched sides - with their power and wealth - they'd make good republicans, but they are still working for the underdog, especially Hillary! I really enjoyed gett I knew she was powerful and experienced. I had no idea how experienced. She certainly is prepared more than any other potential candidate. No one can deny she isn't ready for it, but I don't blame her if she doesn't take the job. I'm not sure the people of this country deserve her hard work. I'm grateful this influential couple has not switched sides - with their power and wealth - they'd make good republicans, but they are still working for the underdog, especially Hillary! I really enjoyed getting an inside look at the animosities and frustrations between the Clinton's and Obama's. A classic uniting for the sake of the party which required two very mature people (Obama & Hillary). I have to say, she was more forgiving of him for quite some time and he finally responded. Perhaps it took him longer, because he is younger and less wise. Either way, they both learned a great deal - something many politicians cannot seem to do "on the job".

  9. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie

    HOLY HELL!!! This book me forever to get though. Not because I wasn't enjoying it or that I didn't like it. Just so much information. So many names!!!!! Deputy secretary of this or that....assistant deputy secretary of assistant secretary....JEEZ! so many people and names...no wonder this country is in debt. We have WAY too many people employed :) From now on...no one has an assistant! Anyway, it was a fascinating read. Very informative and interesting. I am a Hilary fan and this book made me an HOLY HELL!!! This book me forever to get though. Not because I wasn't enjoying it or that I didn't like it. Just so much information. So many names!!!!! Deputy secretary of this or that....assistant deputy secretary of assistant secretary....JEEZ! so many people and names...no wonder this country is in debt. We have WAY too many people employed :) From now on...no one has an assistant! Anyway, it was a fascinating read. Very informative and interesting. I am a Hilary fan and this book made me an even bigger one. It was such an eye opener regarding the fund raising and the backing that goes into any campaign let alone a Presidential one. I was intrigued by the amount of "loyalty" that is given and expected. I thought this was a great read!

  10. 4 out of 5

    Violet

    “‘I sort of describe it as “stages of Hillary,”’ one member of Defense Secretary Robert Gates’s inner circle said. ‘You know, you first dread the prospect of working with her, then you sort of begrudgingly begin to respect her, then you outright respect her and her incredible work ethic. You know she’s inexhaustible, she’s tough-minded ... she’s charming and she’s funny and she’s interesting and she’s inquisitive and she’s engaging’” HRC – Kindle location 1682. I’m not sure why I chose to read t “‘I sort of describe it as “stages of Hillary,”’ one member of Defense Secretary Robert Gates’s inner circle said. ‘You know, you first dread the prospect of working with her, then you sort of begrudgingly begin to respect her, then you outright respect her and her incredible work ethic. You know she’s inexhaustible, she’s tough-minded ... she’s charming and she’s funny and she’s interesting and she’s inquisitive and she’s engaging’” HRC – Kindle location 1682. I’m not sure why I chose to read this biography of a woman whose views are on the other side of the political spectrum from mine and who lives and leads on the U.S. side of the border. But I’m glad I did. Furthermore, I found myself experiencing something like the “stages of Hillary” even as I read about her. HRC by Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes concerns itself with the six years from Clinton’s withdrawal from the presidential race in 2008 to the present. It ends by discussing the chances Clinton will enter the presidential race of 2016. By the authors’ accounts, over 200 people provided interviews for the book. Many of these are anonymous but many voices are also named. Thus the book feels factual. However, its angle also gave me the sense that it is groundwork for Clinton’s perhaps-presidential-run in 2016. In it we experience the Clintons’ shock and disappointment at being beat out by Obama in the 2008 primaries, Hillary’s surprise at being asked to serve as Secretary of State in the Obama cabinet, her baptism into the job, a behind-the-scenes look at statecraft Obama/Clinton style, the inside experience of headline events like the killing of Bin Ladin and the Benghazi incident, and more. The book is pro-Clinton. I supposed it might be even as I studied the cover with its Hillary cameo of the Mona Lisa smile, and its simple title: HRC (short for Hillary Rodham Clinton), true to the “Hillaryland” way of using abbreviations even as it evokes the image of “Her Royal-highness Clinton.” Through the book I came to admire Clinton for a multitude of things: her work ethic, her political instincts, her loyalty, her kindness and thoughtfulness, her attempt to understand and put to use new technologies in the service of diplomacy and politics, her toughness under pressure, her idealism, and her faith-grounded reasons for wanting to serve her country. For me, a Canadian who doesn’t follow U.S. politics closely, the book was over-heavy with details—names of people from the Democratic establishment, the gossipy intricacies of their relationship and history with the Clintons, and program acronyms of which I read the full name once and promptly forget what they stood for. There is, of course, Google, which I resorted to once or twice to get my bearings. But, not needing to understand the minutiae, I didn’t let myself get too bogged in it. As a whole HRC is an interesting read which will probably gain traction should Hillary Clinton declare herself a candidate for the 2016 presidential race. In that event, HRC will probably help more than hurt her. I received HRC as a gift from the publisher via Blogging for Books for the purpose of writing a review.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Jean

    HRC is written by two journalists Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes. The book attempts to be neutral while providing in depth recounting of Hillary Clinton from defeat in the 2008 democratic primaries to Obama, her stint as Secretary of State up to 2013. It also is a revealing window into the layers of intrigue that develops when a celebrity politician who is married to a former U.S. President loses to yet another celebrity politician and goes on to serve the politician who defeated her. The author HRC is written by two journalists Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes. The book attempts to be neutral while providing in depth recounting of Hillary Clinton from defeat in the 2008 democratic primaries to Obama, her stint as Secretary of State up to 2013. It also is a revealing window into the layers of intrigue that develops when a celebrity politician who is married to a former U.S. President loses to yet another celebrity politician and goes on to serve the politician who defeated her. The author’s emphases the Clinton’s loyalty and disloyalty list and loyalty emerges as a theme through the book. The author’s claim that during her tenure as Secretary of State, Bill Clinton was busy building a base of support for Hillary to run in 2016. The author’s state that Hillary’s term as Secretary of State showed she had strong leadership and organizational skills and a “workmanlike enhancement of diplomacy and development” with “deliverables” those were real but not high-profile. She elevated the stature of State, which had lost influence to the CIA and pentagon. The author’s went into detail about the “Benghazi affair”, her flu and head injury and her work with the Clinton foundation. The author’s state that people who ended up working with Hillary developed great respect for her and liked her. This book retraces much of the same ground covered by “The Secretary” by Kim Ghattas, but with less “I was there” feel and much more political and foreign policy content. The author’s portray Hillary as adept at mastering complicated policy material, attention to detail and obsessed of an “unrelenting work ethic.” They also indicate Hillary was adept at nurturing personal relationships around the world. Hillary Clinton is one of those people that one either loves or hates, there is no in between. This book is interesting no matter which group one falls into. I read this as an audio book. Kimberly Farr did an excellent job narrating this 16 hour book.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Roos

    I am a huge fan of Clinton. I admire the way she always fight back and doesnt give up easily. Also the way she fights for Women's rights is amazing! This book shows the way it was during her time as secretary of state, not only the positive side of it but also the negative side of it. I have a huge respect the way she handled it! I am a huge fan of Clinton. I admire the way she always fight back and doesnt give up easily. Also the way she fights for Women's rights is amazing! This book shows the way it was during her time as secretary of state, not only the positive side of it but also the negative side of it. I have a huge respect the way she handled it!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Michael S

    This book gave me further knowledge on Hillary Clinton, however it was more opinionated then I thought it would be. I also liked how it talked about her debates and political stances. But the book started out when she was beginning her career. I would've liked to know what it was like before that as a kid. In the middle of the book it was very boring. I wanted to just put the book down many times because it was just giving you information and not so much of a story. I feel it would've been bette This book gave me further knowledge on Hillary Clinton, however it was more opinionated then I thought it would be. I also liked how it talked about her debates and political stances. But the book started out when she was beginning her career. I would've liked to know what it was like before that as a kid. In the middle of the book it was very boring. I wanted to just put the book down many times because it was just giving you information and not so much of a story. I feel it would've been better written out as a story but I still enjoyed the book overall. 3/5 stars.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Joseph

    This is a good 250 page book loosely distributed into a little over 400 pages. The authors, especially Jon Allen, make no secret of the fact that they are very much in Hillary's corner. The book is a slog, particularly the first part. Do we need to know every single aide that Hillary brought to her inner circle in the State Department? Do we need to be told repeatedly that Huma Abedin is seen by Hillary as a daughter? Do we need to know that Anthony Weiner, Huma's husband is a well, you know? Nop This is a good 250 page book loosely distributed into a little over 400 pages. The authors, especially Jon Allen, make no secret of the fact that they are very much in Hillary's corner. The book is a slog, particularly the first part. Do we need to know every single aide that Hillary brought to her inner circle in the State Department? Do we need to be told repeatedly that Huma Abedin is seen by Hillary as a daughter? Do we need to know that Anthony Weiner, Huma's husband is a well, you know? Nope, we could have done without that. Do we need to know that Phillipe Reines is a jerk? Do we need to be convinced that Hillary is wedded to her Blackberry? I think not. Superfluous detail aside, the book provides an excellent recounting of Hillary's time as Secretary of State. There can be not doubt that she worked extremely hard, in fact it is hard to imagine anyone working harder. She was also quick to adapt ideas from others. However, her modus operandi was not always the best for career foreign service officers. The authors note: "She had walked into the State Department with a reputation for running a high-drama operation in which loyalty was rewarded over competence. The fact that Obama had given her nearly free rein to choose political appointees threatened to exacerbate fears that she would ignore the permanent structure of the department. Her unprecedented control over political jobs made it hard for her to counter the notion—and the reality—that most decisions would be made by an inner circle of longtime advisers whose ranks were almost impossible to crack. Those appointees, who generally came in and left with the secretary, were layered on top of the foreign service and civil service and given both formal and informal power within the bureaucracy. In every agency, there’s tension between the relatively small political set, which holds outsize influence with the secretary, and the much larger career staff. That natural clash between the two classes ... was cause for concern at the department, even among the small group of political appointees who didn’t come from Hillary’s own circle. “If you didn’t work on the campaign, it was pretty clear where you stood,” said one appointee who was outside Hillary’s circle." Still, there was no one who was more loyal to the President and his Administration than Hillary and the book is at its best when it describes the interaction between the two. Benghazi is very carefully recounted and the telling is appropriately and carefully detailed. You come away -- and I think rightfully so -- that the Congressional hearings on Benghazi were a waste of time and money. Finally, the book, in large part, is based on interviews with people who knew or worked with Hillary. The interviews were almost universally favorable. Loyalty to Hillary among those who worked for her and with her is clearly very much in evidence.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Jerry Williams

    "Promote what you love instead of bashing what you hate."-Zig Ziglar This is one of my life mantras and seems so necessary, in today's society. It would appear in my opinion that with today's constant flow of imagery, information, and advertisement. That people have some how lost their way in making an honest assessment of what they like, love, and hate. There was once a time when people used the Internet and Social Media platforms to promote their individual interest and were able to get a glimp "Promote what you love instead of bashing what you hate."-Zig Ziglar This is one of my life mantras and seems so necessary, in today's society. It would appear in my opinion that with today's constant flow of imagery, information, and advertisement. That people have some how lost their way in making an honest assessment of what they like, love, and hate. There was once a time when people used the Internet and Social Media platforms to promote their individual interest and were able to get a glimpse and understanding of what others were interested, why those people were interested, and how others may be able to take interest. However somewhere along the way, instead of being able to openly express your likes and dislikes with like minded individuals, we as a society have instead been pushed to being told and directed into what and who we should like. Despite the fact that we are all different and unique, we are often attacked and prodded into a herd mentality. I open this statement with that admission as a prelude into my unashamed Love, Admiration, and Respect for Hillary Clinton. Many people scratch their heads at how a young African American Male can find solace and inspiration in a 70yr old white woman that has spent most of her adult career in politics. But I am not really into the habit of raising adults and attempting too persuade people into things that they don't have a taste for. "Live and let Live"....Instead of attempting too sift through the unfounded attacks, mis characterizations, mistakes, and ups and downs of HRCs public and personal life, I just simply inform them that not liking someone or something is fine, however if you would like to explain to me as to why I shouldn't like someone or something please prepare yourself with opinions based on facts and not facts based on opinions. When you read more and more about HRC, you have to respect and commend her tenacity and resilient spirit. Although this book was a little dry and slow at times, will reading it you get a unguarded and exposed look into a woman that has lead a life that has changed modern history. I preferred Hard Choices a little more, however this book gives you the full account of some events that may have been glossed over by Hillary in that book, and instead of giving you her version or personal opinion in reference to events such as Libya and Benghazi. I would recommended that anyone interested in Politics, World Events, or History to give this book a try.

  16. 4 out of 5

    ElaineY

    REVIEW OF AUDIOBOOK; APRIL 24, 2017 Narrator: Kimberly Farr A fairly positive view of Hillary, compared to some other articles and reports I've read. The authors told me some of the good, nice, things that HRC did - like visiting the mother (IIRC) of one of her aides in hospital and the concerned Hillary who didn't sleep for worrying about the attack going on in Benghazi. The first: for such a busy person to take time out for a hospital visit is remarkable and not the HRC I've read about by some o REVIEW OF AUDIOBOOK; APRIL 24, 2017 Narrator: Kimberly Farr A fairly positive view of Hillary, compared to some other articles and reports I've read. The authors told me some of the good, nice, things that HRC did - like visiting the mother (IIRC) of one of her aides in hospital and the concerned Hillary who didn't sleep for worrying about the attack going on in Benghazi. The first: for such a busy person to take time out for a hospital visit is remarkable and not the HRC I've read about by some of the secret service agents' revelations; the second: contrary to the criticisms of HRC's inaction and apathy re. Benghazi, the authors here painted a picture of a woman who would have flown to Benghazi herself and rescued the victims. Yup, a very different Hillary, indeed. I was hoping this book would shed some light on the Benghazi attack from the State Dept's perspective but I was disappointed. I never did get to learn. why the cavalry didn't arrive for Ambassador Stevens and the other 3 Americans. All that was covered was that the reports were vague, inconclusive, and insufficient for the State Dept to take any decisive action. I found this section very frustrating but told myself the book is not about the Benghazi attack but about HRC. And that's done in detail so that I came away with a portrait of a woman totally dedicated to her job...and her country, maybe, and found her husband, Bill's tireless efforts to continue pushing the Clinton machinery rather, umm, interesting. The book also made it a point to point out that HRC "took responsibility but not the blame" for the Benghazi fiasco. It amazes me, the huge staff these high-ranking politicians have and I can't help but wonder how they manage to be efficient and how they can be trusted and relied on if your life were dependent on them. Still, an interesting look at this formidable woman and her support of her staff even when they flub. Here was a powerful, charismatic woman who was an undeniable workaholic yet who was imbued with a sense of humor and a caring for her fellowman that the public does not often get to see. The conflicting accounts about Benghazi still trouble me and the absence of clarity in this book troubles me even more.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Dave

    I can't stress how much I really, really didn't want to relive the 2016 election. From start to finish, the cracks in the American system were on garish display for all the world to see. After Hillary lost, I swore I was done thinking about the Clintons. Then I'm browsing the stacks and this book called out to me. I decided my understanding of the Clintons had been shaped in the 90's, mostly by Rush Limbaugh, and I owed it to myself to better understand my own generation's political context. If I can't stress how much I really, really didn't want to relive the 2016 election. From start to finish, the cracks in the American system were on garish display for all the world to see. After Hillary lost, I swore I was done thinking about the Clintons. Then I'm browsing the stacks and this book called out to me. I decided my understanding of the Clintons had been shaped in the 90's, mostly by Rush Limbaugh, and I owed it to myself to better understand my own generation's political context. If I had read this three years ago I would have considered it a juicy tell-all glimpse into the Clinton dynamic in Washington, but the Trump years have destroyed any and all comparisons. Still, it was engaging to get an insider's view of the motivations of the Clinton camp, and a more in-depth narrative of the Obama years. The tone feels balanced. It's sympathetic to Hillary but candid about many of her faults. The conniving electoral battles, tit-for-tat between Clinton and Obama staffers, private scandals with the Clinton Global Initiative, and other tabloid fodder topics weren't avoided, but also weren't the primary focus of the book. Allen skims over most controversial stuff and keeps the gloves on. Overall, it was valuable to get a clearer picture of Hillary's role in events, get an even-handed account of her motivations, and come to appreciate her strengths. In many cases my flat disagreement with a particular decision became more nuanced (I better understand her rationalization for the Libyan intervention, even though I strongly disagree), and seeing her experiences in previous elections put 2016 into better context: for example, Hillary's questionable behavior in nailing down the superdelegates prior to the 2016 election makes a little more sense when you see how a belated attempt to win their support derailed her nomination in 2008. In this and many other issues, you still see the Clintons as shrewd opportunists who love playing the game, but my understanding finally veered outside of conspiracy theory territory and into something a little more informed.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Scott

    What did Hillary Clinton accomplish as Secretary of State and how did she maintain her viability as a 2016 presidential candidate during 4 years as our chief diplomat (a position that is legally barred from engaging in political activities)? These are the interwoven questions answered in this well researched and well written book. On the surface one might think that Hillary didn't accomplish much as Secretary, after all, relations with Russia are not very good, there is no Middle East peace, and What did Hillary Clinton accomplish as Secretary of State and how did she maintain her viability as a 2016 presidential candidate during 4 years as our chief diplomat (a position that is legally barred from engaging in political activities)? These are the interwoven questions answered in this well researched and well written book. On the surface one might think that Hillary didn't accomplish much as Secretary, after all, relations with Russia are not very good, there is no Middle East peace, and we are still in Afghanistan. Well, as the book points out, these were never going to happen---for reasons that even a Hillary Clinton couldn't overcome. So, was her greatest success actually getting Burma to embrace democracy? No. Categorically no. So what did she do: 1. She clawed back authority and prestige for her country in a world that had come to dispose us. 2. She rested back some of te power that the State dept had lost to the Pentagon during the Bush years. 3. She put the country on a path in which our foreign relations would not only be about Iraq and Afghanistan. 4. She helped communicate to the world that we would be vigilent about terrorism but not be defined by it. 5. She set us on a course that seeks to engage with the people of the world and not just their governments. 6. She embarked on a process of using "smart power" rather than fire power to convince the world to do better. 7. Yes, she got the dictators in Burma to give up.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Jeremy

    Not the liveliest prose in the world, but the book does a good job of explaining some interesting recent history; the ever-evolving relationship between the Clintons and Obama, Hillary's successes and failures as America's chief diplomat, and, of course, what it all might mean for 2016. I'm not super-informed on the issue, but there is a clear and careful discussion of the Benghazi mess that helped me understand it better. Hillary comes off OK and the Republicans repeatedly calling for more inve Not the liveliest prose in the world, but the book does a good job of explaining some interesting recent history; the ever-evolving relationship between the Clintons and Obama, Hillary's successes and failures as America's chief diplomat, and, of course, what it all might mean for 2016. I'm not super-informed on the issue, but there is a clear and careful discussion of the Benghazi mess that helped me understand it better. Hillary comes off OK and the Republicans repeatedly calling for more investigations of it seem childish and desperate to throw mud at Hillary regardless of the facts. The material on Bill Clinton's (AKA the Big Dog, at least to some political operatives) desire for a Clinton family dynasty, and his maneuvering to make it happen, is especially engaging. Not bad, but not likely to be of interest to readers without a strong interest in politics.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Barry Martin Vass

    This is a very good book, detailing Hillary's life from 2008, when she lost the Democratic Presidential nomination to Obama, to incredibly being picked by Obama to be his Secretary of State, to her hands-on running of State and her friendship and necessary collaboration with Defense Secretary Robert Gates, to Benghazi and the messy aftermath, ending in late 2013 with her mulling another Presidential run in 2016 at the age of sixty-nine. Jonathan Allen, the White House bureau chief for Politico, This is a very good book, detailing Hillary's life from 2008, when she lost the Democratic Presidential nomination to Obama, to incredibly being picked by Obama to be his Secretary of State, to her hands-on running of State and her friendship and necessary collaboration with Defense Secretary Robert Gates, to Benghazi and the messy aftermath, ending in late 2013 with her mulling another Presidential run in 2016 at the age of sixty-nine. Jonathan Allen, the White House bureau chief for Politico, and Amie Parnes, the White House correspondent for The Hill newspaper, collaborated on HRC, and it is a very well-researched and documented look at a five-year period in the life of an incredibly complicated and driven woman. This is must-reading for anyone even remotely interested in politics.

  21. 5 out of 5

    EA Duncan

    A little too side cast dominated but definitely interesting.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Cheryl

    No surprise that she lost 2016 as well.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Lacey Louwagie

    Read Harder Challenge Item: Read a book about politics My library had this book shelved with "bios," so I thought I was getting another biography of Hills (I already read A Woman in Charge: The Life of Hillary Rodham Clinton) that was published later and therefore covered her post-Senate years and her time as Secretary of State. This isn't actually a biography -- it pretty much picked up where the last Clinton book I read left off, beginning with her first presidential run, focusing on her tenure Read Harder Challenge Item: Read a book about politics My library had this book shelved with "bios," so I thought I was getting another biography of Hills (I already read A Woman in Charge: The Life of Hillary Rodham Clinton) that was published later and therefore covered her post-Senate years and her time as Secretary of State. This isn't actually a biography -- it pretty much picked up where the last Clinton book I read left off, beginning with her first presidential run, focusing on her tenure as Secretary of State, and wrapping up with questions about a 2016 run. Although I followed Clinton's 2008 campaign (and voted for her), I have to admit that I paid absolutely no attention to her time as Secretary of State -- I wasn't really a news junkie, and she no longer held the position by the time I started working for a news organization. So this book filled in the gaps nicely, although similarly to "A Woman in Charge," there was a certain sense of "distance" in the narrative. Although I got a better idea of the workings of Obama's administration, some interesting character insight into our current president, and a few noteworthy stories about Clinton, I still felt held at arm's length. I haven't ready Hillary Clinton's memoirs (Living History or Hard Choices), but I feel skeptical about them because I know they are part of her political persona, written to present herself in the best light. Yet these journalistic, more "objective" takes always leave me a little unsatisfied, ultimately still feeling that she is an enigma. I often come away feeling as if I've learned more about the people around her -- Bill Clinton, Obama, etc. -- than I have about her. I think what I'm really itching for is Huma Abadin's tell-all up-close memoir. Overall, this book was a bit too much about political machinations for my taste, and either it was published prior to or demurred from mentioning the email scandals, so I felt like it was somewhat incomplete. But I'm a little bit more informed than I was before I read it, and this is an election season in which it's especially important to be well armed.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Tyler Clemons

    One doesn’t need a book to perceive that Hillary Clinton is neither the self-obsessed pathological liar of Rightwing propaganda nor the revolutionary radical of Leftwing fantasies. But who is she? As a millennial who was barely politically conscious for the entirety of the Clinton presidency, I wanted to get some semblance of an objective answer to this question. In an election year dominated by the Trump phenomenon, surprisingly little media attention is being directed toward a figure who could One doesn’t need a book to perceive that Hillary Clinton is neither the self-obsessed pathological liar of Rightwing propaganda nor the revolutionary radical of Leftwing fantasies. But who is she? As a millennial who was barely politically conscious for the entirety of the Clinton presidency, I wanted to get some semblance of an objective answer to this question. In an election year dominated by the Trump phenomenon, surprisingly little media attention is being directed toward a figure who could and probably will become the first woman POTUS (with notable exceptions, including Ezra Klein’s excellent profile for Vox). I found this book on sale at a big chain bookstore and hoped it could fill the void. It did not disappoint. As the book follows Hillary's time at the State Department, the portrait of her that emerges is one of a dedicated, hardworking, fiercely loyal public servant whose unwavering faith in the nobility of her ends sometimes leads her to employ questionable means. One of the most surprising takeaways is just how savvy she is: for a woman who can seem to struggle to connect with voters, she is stunningly nimble and effective in navigating the elites and institutions that make our society run. Notably absent from this portrayal is any real discussion of Hillary's womanness. Perhaps that is understandable, given that Hillary is now the third woman in two decades to hold her position in the Cabinet. But while the glass ceiling at State may have been thoroughly shattered, Hillary's gender is undoubtedly a major contributor to the polarizing effect she has had and continues to have. The book’s treatment of Hillary’s gender in some way parallels the candidate’s own ambivalence, one so characteristic of the First Wave Feminism that Hillary embodies. Excellently paired with Carl Bernstein's "A Woman in Charge," which chronicles Hillary's life up to her decision to run for President in 2008.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Shannyn

    Difficult to read in 2017 without bursting into tears... This is a sometimes engrossing and sometimes sleep-inducing, generally sympathetic portrait of an objectively intelligent and prepared, though certainly flawed, woman who seems to be in a chronic state of trying to run for president, which I suspect is ironically her biggest downfall. Admittedly, I know very little about foreign policy or the political histories of the nations Clinton dealt with during her time at State, so I really have t Difficult to read in 2017 without bursting into tears... This is a sometimes engrossing and sometimes sleep-inducing, generally sympathetic portrait of an objectively intelligent and prepared, though certainly flawed, woman who seems to be in a chronic state of trying to run for president, which I suspect is ironically her biggest downfall. Admittedly, I know very little about foreign policy or the political histories of the nations Clinton dealt with during her time at State, so I really have to take the authors' word for it when they explain complicated diplomatic issues. What emerges is a portrait of a complicated figure with a knack for consuming, deciphering and retaining information (I think this explains in part her tendency to give gobbledy gook non-answers during most interviews. I think she tends to weigh all of the factors and potential backlash affecting her answers to her own detriment). She also emerges at times as a cut-throat strategist, whether hurling sanctions at nations that betray American interests or relying on her husband to punish politicians who supported Obama in 2008 (but only by endorsing their opponents, not like murder or anything), effectively ensuring that none of those delegates or senators would make the same mistake when it came time to endorse her in 2016. I can't really say with confidence that I feel like i know definitively who Hillary Clinton is after reading this book, except that I'm pretty sure she's somewhere planning a 2020 run at this very moment.. I assume there is some truth in much of the criticism directed at her- that she's hawkish, complicit, and sometimes insincere- but she also seems to be cautious and aware of the political hurdles she has to jump through, so I don't think she's a perfect heroine but I also don't think she's the monster we all thought she was last year.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Linda

    HRC can only stand for one thing...Hillary Rodham Clinton. This book turned out by the White House bureau chief for Politico Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes, White House correspondent for The Hill is a fascinating look at Clinton's life from the point where she dropped out of the Democratic primary as Obama surged ahead to the post-Benghazi period and her telling the President she would not take a second term as secretary of state. The book is based on interviews with more than 200 people, most o HRC can only stand for one thing...Hillary Rodham Clinton. This book turned out by the White House bureau chief for Politico Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes, White House correspondent for The Hill is a fascinating look at Clinton's life from the point where she dropped out of the Democratic primary as Obama surged ahead to the post-Benghazi period and her telling the President she would not take a second term as secretary of state. The book is based on interviews with more than 200 people, most of whom were granted anonymity. Which, unfortunately, makes a reader take some of the information with a grain or a shovel of salt. But it is a fascinating look at the double dealing that goes on in political circles in D.C. Many who promised to support Clinton turned to Obama behind her back for the primary nomination for President. Something her husband Bill Clinton made sure a number of people paid dearly for later. It gives some insight into the killing of Osama bin Laden and proves Hillary can keep a secret. It was one of the few times she didn't tell Bill a thing. The book shows that she is capable being hurt but also shows she is a woman who can bounce back. She said that after years of being the First Lady, then senator for New York, running for the primary vote and losing to Obama and then four tough years as secretary of state...it was time for a rest. Her health had suffered because of a bloodclot in her neck, the many hours of long distance flying as secretary of state, the infighting at the state department between her staff and Obama's staff in the beginning of the term and the incredible hours that she put in. One thing about HRC -- she is a tryer. The current run for the White House is just Hillary going at it one more time.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Alise Napp

    Read my full thoughts on this book and hundreds more over at Read.Write.Repeat. This book felt like a fairly balanced look at Clinton's modern persona. Allen and Parnes finished writing it just before Clinton officially declared her candidacy for president in 2015, so it would be interesting to read their thoughts on how things have gone since that point. Still, their deep investigation into Clinton's career and public image in the previous eight years is fascinating. They are gracious and likely Read my full thoughts on this book and hundreds more over at Read.Write.Repeat. This book felt like a fairly balanced look at Clinton's modern persona. Allen and Parnes finished writing it just before Clinton officially declared her candidacy for president in 2015, so it would be interesting to read their thoughts on how things have gone since that point. Still, their deep investigation into Clinton's career and public image in the previous eight years is fascinating. They are gracious and likely Clinton supporters, but those qualities do not prevent them from revealing some of her weaknesses and failings. As we race ever closer to this important election, I encourage you to research, read, and respond accordingly. This book could be a good starting point if you're looking to learn more about Clinton. And, don't forget, regardless of who you are voting for, there is never an excuse to personally attack other voters for their opinions. Learn to agree to disagree with grace. After all, you'd hope for the same from someone who disagrees with you.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Treasure I. Moore, Author

    As my first political read, I found HRC to be an enlightening piece that allowed the reader a meaningful peek into the the very complex world of the leaders of our country and government. I felt reminded constantly of the human element and that these people are truly just like us. My biggest take-away has to be the realization that leaders aren't born, they're made, and the good ones work hard at their craft. As I began reading this book during the 2016 World Olympic Games, I jotted down all the As my first political read, I found HRC to be an enlightening piece that allowed the reader a meaningful peek into the the very complex world of the leaders of our country and government. I felt reminded constantly of the human element and that these people are truly just like us. My biggest take-away has to be the realization that leaders aren't born, they're made, and the good ones work hard at their craft. As I began reading this book during the 2016 World Olympic Games, I jotted down all the many countries participating as they were introduced in the parade of nations. It's quite amazing that Secretary/Senator H. R. Clinton has visited so many of these countries and is able to communicate with people of different cultures. I really liked the chapter titles chosen by the authors - Hit List, Be Gracious in Defeat, Calculated Risk, Us and Them, First Among Equals, and Bloom Where Your Planted and the story line surrounding them were consistent and developed well. The possibility of having her as our first female president is exciting! My only hope is for her to pull the reins in a little closer in regards to her health. God speed.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Alexandra Scarborough

    This was a well-balanced look at the career of Hillary Clinton, from the time she ran for President in 2008 to the initial stirrings of her 2016 campaign. Written by journalists, the book is very much in keeping with a "research-and-reporting" style, which occasionally can make the slog through names and dates a little laborious. Nonetheless, the insider perspectives and details not publicized in the media made it an engrossing read. HRC's own voice was missing from this bio, but I think that wa This was a well-balanced look at the career of Hillary Clinton, from the time she ran for President in 2008 to the initial stirrings of her 2016 campaign. Written by journalists, the book is very much in keeping with a "research-and-reporting" style, which occasionally can make the slog through names and dates a little laborious. Nonetheless, the insider perspectives and details not publicized in the media made it an engrossing read. HRC's own voice was missing from this bio, but I think that was intentional, in the interest of the aforementioned "balance." One still gets a sense, though, of the Hillary we are not as privileged to know, because her image is subsumed by negative media and public opinion. I like and respect the HRC this book depicted--but then, I already liked and respected HRC. I am proud she has long been our country's public servant, often without taking any credit for the good she creates. Now, more than ever, we need more HRCs.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Lissa

    There are several books about Hillary Clinton that have been advertised recently (including her latest memoir) but this is a good wrap-up of her most recent role as Secretary of State. The authors are obviously well-connected and provided a lot of inside information (although with many unnamed sources). Clinton is a compelling subject and her personality shines through here as she deals with working for a former campaign rival and managing expectations as the most visible face for foreign policy There are several books about Hillary Clinton that have been advertised recently (including her latest memoir) but this is a good wrap-up of her most recent role as Secretary of State. The authors are obviously well-connected and provided a lot of inside information (although with many unnamed sources). Clinton is a compelling subject and her personality shines through here as she deals with working for a former campaign rival and managing expectations as the most visible face for foreign policy. While the book did highlight some of her shortcomings, I thought it was mostly a favorable account of her last seven years of work. I found this book extremely interesting but definitely political and I am sure it will not be for everyone. I received this book through the Blogging for Books program in exchange for an honest review.

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