Politician Bob Elam enters the fray as a gubernatorial candidate intent on achieving meaningful change only to be co-opted by a cynical legislator. His aide, though still the believer, is effortlessly swept away.
The contested use of public resources serves as a backdrop while ordinary folks experience individual successes and collective failures. The enduring prejudice toward the American Indian, conflicting tenets, and human foibles are key elements of the story as it explores the pain of lost causes and withdrawn fidelities.
Today's widespread frustration with government is perhaps better understood by understanding the odyssey of The Ugly Bureaucrat. It's a story of where we've been - of probably where we are.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I rate this book as exceptional because the story telling is unusually strong. The tale told in this work of fiction is so well crafted the reader is left quite certain it really could have happened just this way. To be sure there are a lot of characters to keep track of but it's worth the trouble. Each chapter takes an unexpected turn that begs the question what on earth will happen next? So it was a book I wanted to keep reading. As the title implies, this novel does not paint a pretty picture of people or government. But it does carry the reassuring message that we are not crazy when we wonder what's wrong with government.