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The New York Times Book ReviewIf Where They Stand doesn't realize Merry's announced aim of bringing order to the rankings, it does provide a pleasing romp through the annals of American politics. Knowledgeable about the past, well read in the scholarly literature, Merry is given to moderate and sensible judgments, patiently argued in straightforward prose. At heart, one senses, he is not really a quantifier or systematizer at all and perhaps not even convinced of his own statement that the ratings game is "more than just a beguiling diversion." He simply wants the reader to join him in what is, after all, a favorite indoor sport of history-minded Americans, one that "forever runs parallel to American history."