• by John Dickerson
  • Narrated by John Dickerson
  • 13 hrs and 11 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

From Face the Nation moderator and Slate columnist John Dickerson come the stories behind the stories of the most memorable moments in American presidential campaign history.
The stakes are high. The characters full of striving and ego. Presidential campaigns are a contest for control of power in the most powerful country on earth. The battle of ideas has a clear end, with winners and losers, and along the way there are sharp turning points-primaries, debates, conventions, and scandals that squeeze candidates into emergency action, frantic grasping, and heroic gambles. As Mike Murphy the political strategist put it, "Campaigns are like war without bullets."
Whistlestop tells the human story of nervous gambits hatched in first-floor hotel rooms, failures of will before the microphone, and the cross-country crack-ups of long-planned stratagems. At the bar at the end of a campaign day, these are the stories reporters rehash for themselves and embellish for newcomers.
In addition to the familiar tales, Whistlestop also remembers the forgotten stories about the bruising and reckless campaigns of the 19th century when the combatants believed the consequences included the fate of the republic itself. Some of the most modern-feeling elements of the American presidential campaign were born before the roads were paved and electric lights lit the convention halls - if there were convention halls at all.
Whistlestop is a ride through the American campaign history with one of its most enthusiastic conductors guiding you through the landmarks along the way.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Lovers of the podcast this is ultimate fix!

John Dickerson in his usual bemused baritone delivers this entire book in the same way her delivers his amazing podcast. This was just the fix I needed and I may listen to it again. Fans of his whistle stop podcast will delight in extended in depth versions of podcast narratives; as well as new and interesting stories.
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- killerqueen

Puts 2016 election into helpful context

Book is well researched and interestingly presented. Just watch Face the Nation for a taste of John Dickerson.

Regardless of where you came out on the 2016 election this book will provide a helpful context. Believe it or not it wasn't all that unique in our history.

In fact, I'd say it fell somewhere into the middle of the "crazy" to "uneventful" continuum based on what I learned in this book.
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- William

Book Details

  • Release Date: 08-09-2016
  • Publisher: Hachette Audio