Two veteran reporters and political analysts look at the 1992 presidential campaigns and election, teasing out the elements that gave Clinton his victory over Bush. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
Germond and Witcover's emulations of the late Theodore White's books on U.S. presidential campaigns sell pretty well (this is their fourth) but never as well as their mentor's. Small wonder, really, for although the pair sedulously chronicles seemingly every event in the long, quadrennial journeys to 1600 Pennsylvania, their accounts sadly lack the kind of characterization and analysis that would make distinguished contemporary history of their journeyman journalism. Kevin Phillips' discussion of the meanings of the 1992 election in "Boiling Point" , which otherwise fries bigger fish, will reward the thoughtful reader more than Germond and Witcover's entire effort, and surely literarily better hands will soon give us profiles of 1992's principal actors that will rise from the page in a way that G&W's stickmen named Clinton, Tsongas, Bush, et al., never do. Meanwhile, before 1996's electoral circus begins, Jack and Jules ought to brush up on prepositions, which they use incorrectly or cloddishly more than guys who write for a living ought to.