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Click to search this book in our catalog The Big Lie
by Jonathan Lemire

Book list There's been a spate of headline-grabbing Trump presidency tell-alls recently. Lemire, the AP White House correspondent and MSNBC host, does something different here, offering a chronicle of "The Big Lie," which began in 2016, when candidate Trump casually mentioned that if he didn't beat Hillary Clinton, the election was rigged. Lemire then hits the highlights (or, for many, the lowlights) of the next six years. For readers who've been paying attention, the overview of the Trump presidency will seem more than familiar. But this is a useful exercise, putting events in order and in context, especially for those whose memory has grown fuzzy or who have missed some lesser-known incidents. Perhaps the most interesting part of the book is its latter third, which chronicles recent events, particularly the effect The Big Lie has had on political discourse, Biden administration policy, election viability, and overall safety. For readers wondering whether politics is ever going to get back to something resembling normal, Lemire's answer seems to be a simple nope.

From Booklist, Copyright American Library Association. Used with permission.

Kirkus A compendium of Donald Trump’s massive campaign of fraud, grift, and democracy-killing mendacity, in and out of office. It will come as no surprise that Trump built a tottering empire on lies. Though he doesn’t bring much fresh news, Lemire, White House bureau chief at Politico and host at MSNBC, does a useful service by assembling Trump’s fabrications in one place. The biggest of those lies is the constellation of assertions that the 2020 election was rigged and that Trump won. Of course, Trump, “the unlikeliest major party presidential nominee in more than a century,” was saying the same thing in 2016, preparing his base for what seemed the inevitable loss to Hillary Clinton. When he won, rather than admit that he might have been wrong, Trump continued to claim that the election was rigged, with illegal ballots that conspired to deprive him of winning the popular vote as well as the Electoral College. Even co-conspirator fellow grifter Steve Bannon, writes Lemire, commented, “Trump would say anything, he would lie about anything to win that moment, to win whatever exchange he was having at that moment.” As Lemire consistently and depressingly shows throughout his narrative, Trump blustered and lied about everything, and many of them “were just plain hard to categorize, like Trump’s insistence that windmills cause cancer.” The problem was, as Lemire documents, enough people believed his lies—whether the opening-moment-in-office lie that the inauguration crowd was bigger than Obama’s or the closing one that he had swept the ballot in 2020—that we wound up with Jan. 6. Where fresh news is in short supply, the author’s warnings run long. If anything, the lies will mount, as will the violence, even as a compliant and frightened Republican Party, which had its moment to stand up for democracy on Jan. 7, acquiesces to its lying master. A potent indictment that, lest anyone forget, underscores the dangers of Trump and Trumpism. Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Book list There's been a spate of headline-grabbing Trump presidency tell-alls recently. Lemire, the AP White House correspondent and MSNBC host, does something different here, offering a chronicle of "The Big Lie," which began in 2016, when candidate Trump casually mentioned that if he didn't beat Hillary Clinton, the election was rigged. Lemire then hits the highlights (or, for many, the lowlights) of the next six years. For readers who've been paying attention, the overview of the Trump presidency will seem more than familiar. But this is a useful exercise, putting events in order and in context, especially for those whose memory has grown fuzzy or who have missed some lesser-known incidents. Perhaps the most interesting part of the book is its latter third, which chronicles recent events, particularly the effect The Big Lie has had on political discourse, Biden administration policy, election viability, and overall safety. For readers wondering whether politics is ever going to get back to something resembling normal, Lemire's answer seems to be a simple nope.

From Booklist, Copyright American Library Association. Used with permission.

Publishers Weekly Politico reporter Lemire debuts with a trenchant analysis of the origins and impact of Donald Trump’s false claims that the 2020 election was stolen from him. Tracing the roots of the January 6 Capitol riot to an August 2016 rally in which Trump first publicly said that he expected the upcoming presidential election to be rigged, Lemire sketches Trump’s long record of distortions about his real estate holdings, wealth, TV ratings, and sex life. Lemire also details how Trump’s promotion of the “birther” conspiracy during the Obama presidency helped him to gain traction among Republican voters and revisits the 2019 episode in which then president Trump crudely altered a hurricane forecast map in order to justify his erroneous claim that Alabama had been in the storm’s path. Though treated as a joke at the time, Trump’s actions, coupled with the pressure government employees felt to support him, “changed the very nature of the nation’s politics and deliberately exacerbated the mistrust many Americans already had in their government.” Throughout, Lemire forcefully calls out Trump’s Republican enablers and uncovers behind-the-scenes details about Sen. Joe Manchin’s torpedoing of the “Build Back Better” bill and other events. This dispatch on the state of American politics hits the bull’s-eye. (July)

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Oprah's Book Club
Click to search this book in our catalog Here on Earth
by Alice Hoffman

Publishers Weekly Often, in her soulful novels, Hoffman (Practical Magic, etc.) lets mystical atmospherics-animals that take on superhuman qualities, intense colors and temperatures, minute vibrations in the air that signal ghosts or spirits-do all the work while her characters behave in strange and incredible ways under the influence of forces outside themselves. In this novel, the characters' behavior, while highly emotional, is initially at least traceable to psychological motivation. Unfortunately, Hoffman abandons psychological credibility halfway through, after which her protagonist, March Murray, behaves like an automaton. When March comes back to her childhood home in a small Massachusetts town after 19 years in California, she is swept with longing for Hollis, her former soul mate and lover who ran away in a fit of pique. March waited for him for three years, then married her next-door neighbor, Richard Cooper. When Hollis finally did return, he wed Richard's sister, who has since died. Hollis now determines to win March back, and she can't resist his single-minded pursuit. Hoffman conveys the mesmerizing lure of a lost love with haunting sensuality; but March's excuses for Hollis's violent personality and for his physical abuse of her and her teenaged daughter, Gwen, are well beyond the willed myopia of even obsessive love. Other love affairs?between the housekeeper who raised March and the man who was her father's law partner; and between rebellious teenager Gwen (the best character by far, drawn with delightful realism) and March's reclusive brother's son?are described with much more insight and plausibility. The high drama of this novel, and Hoffman's assured and lyrical prose, may carry the day for readers who can accept the premise that a passionate obsession can make sweet reason, maternal protectiveness and the instinct for self-preservation fly out the window. 100,000 first printing; $150,000 ad/promo; Literary Guild featured alternate; film rights to Douglas Reuther. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Kirkus From the author of Practical Magic (1995), among others, a kind of inside-out Bridges of Madison County in which the middle- aged mother of a teenager falls in love with a bad man, leaves her husband for him, and winds up abused and isolated. The results are predictably depressing. It might seem that March Murray has purely sentimental reasons for leaving her apparently happy life in California (nice house, professor husband) to attend her former housekeeper's funeral in Jenkintown, Mass., the bleak, suffocatingly tiny town where she grew up. After all, Mrs. Dale did help March's father raise her after the girl's mother died, and she remained a loyal friend until her death. But anyone who knew March in her teenage years must suspect that her real reason for returning with sullen teenage daughter in tow is for a reunion with Hollis, the bad boy March was once inseparable from. An abandoned child and the product of a series of detention homes, Hollis was brought to the Murray house as a charity-case boarder when he was in his teens. He kept his own counsel, except when sending smoldering glances March's way. The two became lovers until a misunderstanding split them apart--March to marry the rich boy next door, Hollis to amass a fortune, marry March's sister-in-law, and survive her to wait, brooding, for March's return. Their heated reunion leads to the breakup of March's marriage, and, despite the warnings of practically everyone in town, March moves into Hollis's gloomy mansion, puts up with his neurotic possessiveness, and watches him scare her daughter back to California before she realizes that the Hollis she lives with now is nothing but the evil, heartless relic of the wounded boy she once loved. A chilly, hopeless love story with an unhappy conclusion. Hard to see what readers will find to like in such a tale. (First printing of 100,000; Literary Guild featured alternate selection; $150,000 ad/promo; author tour)

Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Book list Hoffman's powers of enchantment increase exponentially in each of her cosmically romantic novels. Just as she did in Practical Magic (1995), Hoffman depicts love as a disturbance in the field, but here it is manifested as an unpredictable force of nature that encompasses all extremes, from the chilling pall of winter to the life-and-death properties of fire. Richard, March's sweet but distracted husband, should not have let her return to their small New England hometown with only their teenage daughter, Gwen, for company. He should have known that when March left for the haunted terrain of Fox Hill, she would meet up with Hollis, the jealous and angry boy-man with whom she was so deeply in love as a young woman. Hollis transformed himself from a resentful charity case into a millionaire but left death and despair in his wake and achieved no joy through his success. And he's still obsessed with March, who slips right back into the confines of their passion because Hollis possesses the sort of power that makes women cling and submit. Hoffman walks a fine line between bodice-ripping trash romance and bewitching but intelligent fiction here, but her fluency in the language of the heart and the bruised tenderness of her prose lift her far above cliche, into a luminous realm where the souls of her poignant characters open like moonflowers. (Reviewed July 1997)0399143130Donna Seaman

From Booklist, Copyright American Library Association. Used with permission.

Library Journal From the magical Hoffman: a woman journeys home?and into her past. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Library Journal As this novel opens, March Murray Cooper returns to her hometown, ostensibly to bury the woman who raised her but needing to resolve the unfinished business of her youthful love for Hollis, from whom she has been separated for years. Hollis has now grown into a man embittered by loneliness. He has learned neither to forgive nor to forget, and March must discover whether he can ever learn to love. Hoffman (Practical Magic, LJ 12/94) takes great care here to examine the many facets of love and relationships, turning them like a prism to reflect on March and Hollis. Hoffman's evocative language and her lyrical descriptions of place contrast sharply with the emotional scars that her characters must uncover and bear. Her novel is a haunting tale of a woman lost in and to love; it will enthrall the reader from beginning to end. Highly recommended. [Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 5/1/97.]?Caroline M. Hallsworth, Cambrian Coll., Sudbury, Ontario (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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