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Publisher's Summary

If your funny older sister were the former deputy chief of staff to President Barack Obama, her behind-the-scenes political memoir would sound something like this. Who Thought This Was a Good Idea? is an intimate and admiring portrait of a president, a candid book of advice for young women, and a promising debut from a savvy political star.
©2017 Alyssa Mastromonaco (P)2017 Hachette Audio
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Critic Reviews

"A candid and charming memoir of her unexpected career in government.... The memoir abounds with intimate glimpses of Washington, D.C., celebrities (Biden, Clinton, Michelle Obama, and scores more) and cheerfully dispensed survival strategies. An entertaining look inside the White House." (Kirkus)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Weswig on 03-25-17

Humorous, insightful, and empowering

Any additional comments?

If you are looking for a book that is humorous, insightful, and empowering to women in leadership this is a great one for you. I think if you liked Tina Fey's and Mindy Kaling's books, you'll like this one too. I'm almost done with the audible version and love it!

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38 of 45 people found this review helpful


By Jean on 04-06-17

Engaging and funny

This is the autobiography/memoir of Alyssa Mastromonaco. She starts off telling about growing up in a small town in Vermont. While attending the University of Vermont she did her summer internship with Bernie Sanders. After college she worked for Senator John Kerry then obtained a job with Senator Barack Obama. When Obama became President, she became the Deputy Chief of Staff to the President. She was the youngest women to assume this office.

The author provides a look inside how presidential campaigns are run and what it is like to work in the White House. For those planning on a job in politics, she provides some pointers and a few examples are…. “always be prepared”, “Know as much as possible about the people you meet”,… “Be polite”… “Take responsibility for your mistakes”.

The book is easy to read but did not follow a chronological order which was a bit confusing at times. I enjoyed the humor but what I did not enjoy was the profanity. If you are curious about politics or thinking about working in politics, you will enjoy this book.

The book is about six hours long. The author narrated the book.

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33 of 39 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

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By J. Casey on 05-18-17

Funny, smart & inspiring in the best way

Warm, funny & very human.
I basically want Alyssa to be my new best friend because she manages to make one of the most stressful jobs in the word seem like an absolute privilege (which it is, I guess).
She's warm, funny as hell - all while being grounded & practical.
The book is lovely to listen to- like listening to a friend and it's filled with great stories about her time at the White House that make the very idea of working in government & politics seem attainable & positive instead of the usual political memoir filled with backstabbing manoeuvring.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful


By cg on 09-15-17

entertaining

good book ..light and entertaining and good insight into life at the White House and commitment involved in same .

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Customer Reviews

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By Wendy R. on 04-17-17

Smart, funny and insightful

Loved loved loved Alyssa's story. Really interesting perspective of politics at the highest level rarely told by a younger woman. Really appreciated the "boots and all" detail on the challenges of juggling monthly menstruation and IBS in a crazy busy job. We have all experienced this in some way and it was great to hear it told so honestly. Highly recommended.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful


By plukni on 04-01-17

Enlightening and encouraging! Thanks Mastromonaco!!

Provides a great look into the world of politics as a young person and as a woman.
Having worked in a head of state's office I found this particularly relatable; the stories and feelings.
I loved the anecdotes such as the tampons in the White House (who'd have thought!!) to the crazy of organising events at the last minute that you miss out on other stuff such as the fancy dinners but you don't mind because you actually love the crazy.
Thanks for being inspiring!! It's hard adjusting after working in that kind of environment; I often look back on my experiences and want to go back for all the reasons raised in this book.

I'm glad you wrote this; and that Oyler helped tackle it (and that you explained it!!) I'm glad I read the Lenny article and heard about this book!

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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