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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
What judgment will history ultimately make about the eight-year presidency of Bill Clinton? Will he be judged by his achievements, such as reforming welfare, creating millions of jobs, creating budget surpluses instead of budget deficits, and protecting the environment? Or will it be judged by the seemingly endless scandals, both political and personal, that ate up so much valuable time? Was he a success or a disappointment? It may well be years before we have enough distance from the Clinton administration to look at it impartially. Joe Klein, who became famous as the mysterious "Anonymous" who wrote the political novel Primary Colors, has written a "warts and all" look at Clinton's terms in office, reflecting both his political strengths (his amazingly encyclopedic knowledge of any and every issue, his ability to find a "third way" between stereotypical Republican and Democratic philosophies, etc.) and his weaknesses (overindulgence in just about every human foible one can think of, among others).
Klein, who has had unparalleled access to Clinton over the years, is uniquely qualified to present an evenhanded and eloquent take on a man who was viciously hated by his (many) political enemies, but loved and -- it seems -- understood by average Americans who saw him as a human being just like themselves. Even those who feel they might be suffering from "Clinton fatigue" will find Klein's fair and honest portrayal well worth reading. (Nicholas Sinisi)
Nicholas Sinisi is the Barnes & Noble.com Current Events editor.