Review: This Town by Mark Leibovich

Where did I get this book? A thrift shop in Fairfax, Virginia.

Where did I get this book? A thrift shop in Fairfax, Virginia.

Published in 2013, This Town opens with the funeral of Tim Russert, legendary host of Meet the Press. The gathering draws big names from all of D.C.’s key elements: journalists, government officials, politicians, and lobbyists.

With a dry sense of humor and a somewhat jaundiced eye, Leibovich proceeds to show how incestuous and chummy the power ecosystem in the nation’s capital really is. Power, hierarchy, relationships, and insider information are the metrics by which everyone is judged. The anecdotes shared in this book are as dismaying as they are amusing.

Genre: Dishy political nonfiction

Read it if: You regularly watch Morning Joe, Meet the Press, or C-SPAN; you are considering a career in politics; or you want your worst fears about Washington insiders confirmed.

Skip it if: You have never heard of Paul Ryan, Politico, or Ben Bradlee; you are already sick of this election and don’t want to think about the last one; you prefer to maintain a “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington” vision of our government.

Movie-worthy: Not necessary. Just watch House of Cards, Scandal, Veep (or Brain Dead!) instead.


Category: Reviews

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