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The man behind some of the greatest political changes of the last decade, David Axelrod has devoted a lifetime to questioning political certainties and daring to bring fresh thinking into the political landscape. Whether as a child hearing John F. Kennedy stump in New York or as a strategist guiding the first African American to the White House, Axelrod shows in Believer how his own life stands at the center of the tumultuous American century.
Believer begins in the inimitable world of 1960s New York, but rapidly moves west. As a young newspaperman in the Chicago of the 1970s and 1980s, Axelrod reported on the dissolution of the last of the big city political machines, along with the emergence of a black, independent movement that made Obama's ascent possible. Seeing the golden age of Chicago journalism collapse, Axelrod switched careers to become a political strategist, working for pathbreakers like Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton and morally conflicted characters like John Edwards. For better and worse, Axelrod helped to redefine the techniques by which modern political campaigns are run.
The heart of Believer is devoted to Axelrod's 20-year friendship with Obama, a warm partnership that inspired both men even as it propelled each to great heights. As senior adviser to the president, Axelrod served during one of the most challenging periods in national history and worked at Obama's side as he battled an economic disaster, navigated America through two wars, and fought to reform health care, the financial sector, and our grid-locked political institutions.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Mary Jo on 04-24-15
I especially hearing from David directly. What a brilliant man. I highly recommended to anyone. Sure wish some of the staunch Republicans would take the time to read it. Their biases have caused our nation to head backwards. This president will go down in history as one of the greatest. Mark my words'n.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful
By DaWoolf on 03-15-15
Love letter to Obama
Believer is pseudo autobiography of David Axelrod with a specialized emphasis on his experiences as Senior Advisor to President Obama. The book is best described as a re-telling of the Obama Senatorial and Presidential elections from the guy who designed and implemented the strategy. The story is entertaining and reminds an educated reader about how Obama basically came out of no-where to become President within 5 years of any public notoriety. Believer does suffer from two major faults: 1) Axelrod does not provide the informed reader any new or revealing information. If you are an avid reader of current events, Believer will read like cliff notes. 2) Axelrod paints a picture of President Obama as a near deity. According to Axelrod the three worst you can say about the President is he smokes, uses profanity, and occasionally refuses to listen his advisors. Don’t think me an Obama hater! I twice voted for him and consider him one of the most consequential President’s since LBJ. But my experiences indicate that no one is so perfect.
Overall, if you love the President and would like to relive the enthusiasm and excitement of the Obama elections, Believer is your book.
11 of 12 people found this review helpful
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By KRB on 03-03-17
Way better than expected!
David talks politics from the start, and uses his personal life to show the journey and intricacies of local, and then later national politics. I was expecting a slow, blow by blow description of his years with Obama, but this was much more than that. It gives a great glimpse into what happened behind the campaign and presidency. .. and before we get to that he uses his own life to describe the journey and mechanics of American politics. Great book, and very smooth and 'easy on the ears' to listen to. He has a great calm soothing voice. Loved this book!