A Review of Living History

Living HistoryLiving History by Hillary Rodham Clinton

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I have to start by confessing the Clintons are my favorite politicians and I love them dearly. I miss Bill being in the White House and I think Hillary should have been. Now that that’s out of the way, I finally, finally got a copy of this book and I just couldn’t put it down. (I am biased, remember?) I thought it was enthralling. I think it really showed the human side of Hillary, whereas in the media she’s often portrayed in a very negative light, or like she’s a robot or something. I loved this book! And I learned a lot too. For instance, I didn’t know she grew up a staunch Republican and was both a Goldwater girl and the president of her college’s Republican club. That was interesting. I got a feel throughout the book that she really was truly in love with Bill and that his betrayal of her with Monica hurt her deeply, but it was her love of him that ultimately kept them together. She doesn’t mince words with her hurt and despair over his affair. She also spends a lot of time on their eight years in the White House together (which obviously makes sense). She defends Bill and the Democrats and while trying to be reasonably fair, she does take the Republicans to task at times, especially Newt, Bob Dole, and Bush. She was appalled at the 2000 election results where the Supreme Court stole the popular vote from Gore and gave the presidency to Bush. I am too, still. I didn’t know, however, that Hillary was such an amazing advocate for women and children throughout the world. She made the rounds, got a lot accomplished, and was heavily honored for her efforts. This book was written in 2004, after she had become a New York senator. I wish there could be a 2010-2012 update with her role as Secretary of State under Obama. I’d be interested in what she would have to say about current Republican obstructionism. She also made Chelsea come alive for me. I hadn’t known that much about her, and she details the trips they took together, and the campaigning Chelsea did for them, etc., et al, and I have a greater appreciation for their daughter now. Bill wasn’t a perfect person, man, or president, but he did preside over the greatest period of prosperity in our country’s history, along with numerous other achievements, all the while with Ken Starr trying to put him in jail — talk about a stupid, wicked witch hunt! — and I admire him even more after reading this book. Hillary talks about her health care reform efforts and how those were blunted by the Republicans, although she did get more accomplished there than I had realized. All in all, if you’re a Clinton fan, you’ll probably enjoy the book. If you’re not, you’ll probably hate it. A lot of people on Goodreads complain about the name dropping in this book, but I viewed it as legitimate. Hillary DID have a lot of people to talk about and thank. What’s wrong with that? It wasn’t a distraction for me. I’m so happy I finally bought this book and read it. Now I have to read Bill’s books….

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