Is Anyone Reading about McCain?

Curiously, with all the political bios and memoirs dotting betseller lists, books by and about McCain are low in sales rankings (the highest on Amazon is Faith of Our Fathers, by McCain and Mark Salter, at #842). 

As we get closer to the election, there will likely be more interest, so Christopher Beam put together “Grand Old Book Party; What to Read about John McCain and the Future of the GOP,” which appers in both the Washington Post Sunday “Outlook” section, and, in a slightly different form in Slate

Beam mentions the autobiograhies McCain and Mark Salter have written over the years and then goes on to describe some other titles:

The Nightingale’s Song

Robert Timberg 

“juicy anecdotes about young McCain”

  • Paperback: $16.00; 544 pages
  • Publisher: Free Press; (September 11, 1996)
  • ISBN-10: 0684826739
  • ISBN-13: 978-0684826738 
  • Amazon Sales Rank: #2,452 
  • Audio CD: Unabridged, 14 CD’s, $120
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audiobooks, (October 1, 2008)
  • ISBN-10: 1433260379
  • ISBN-13: 978-1433260377

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John McCain: An American Odyssey
Robert Timberg
Nightingale’s Song was  “chopped and repackaged” as this title. Beam recommends reading the original, because it also covers Jim Webb.
  • Paperback: $15.00; 240 pages
  • Publisher: Free Press (September 18, 2007)
  • ISBN-10: 141655985X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416559856
  • Amazon Sales Rank: #63,750

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Free Ride: John McCain and the Media

David Brock and Paul Waldman

Meant to “indict the MSM for its too-friendly coverage of McCain…[instead, it] often reads like an unintentional ode to the senator’s media savvy.”

  • Paperback: $13.95, 240 pages
  • Publisher: Anchor (March 25, 2008)
  • ISBN-10: 0307279405
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307279408
  • Amazon Sales Rank: #130,922

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Citizen McCain

Elizabeth Drew

“squarely in Camp McCain… a well-intentioned snorer”

  • Paperback: $12.00; 208 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster; Reprint edition (May 6, 2008)
  • ISBN-10: 1416593179
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416593171
  • Amazon Sales Rank: #166,964

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Man of the People: The Maverick Life and Career of John McCain, Revised and Updated for the 2008 Presidential Election

Paul Alexander

Like Citizen McCain, “should… be sold with pom-poms.”

Originally pubbed in 2004, this title was recently updated.

     

  • Paperback: $14.95; 240 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; Rev Upd edition (June 23, 2008)
  • ISBN-10: 0470390700
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470390702 
  • Amazon.com Sales Rank: #90,307

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The following, says Beam, are by skeptics:

 

McCain: The Myth of a Maverick

Matt Welch

  • Hardcover: $27.95; 256 pages
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan; (October 16, 2007)
  • ISBN-10: 0230603963
  • ISBN-13: 978-0230603967
  • Amazon Sales Rank: #59,846
About to be released in paperback:
  • Paperback: $16.95; 272 pages
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan (September 16, 2008)
  • ISBN-10: 0230608051
  • ISBN-13: 978-0230608054

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McCain’s Promise: Aboard the Straight Talk Express With John McCain and a Whole Bunch of Actual Reporters, Thinking About Hope

David Foster Wallace

  • Paperback: $9.99; 144 pages
  • Publisher: Back Bay Books; (June 1, 2008)
  • ISBN-10: 0316040533
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316040532
  • Amazon Sales Rank: #135,728

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Grand New Party: How Republicans Can Win the Working Class and Save the American Dream

Ross Douthat and Reihan Salam

According to Beam, “with the GOP struggling nationwide” the suggestions in this book “might actually help” McCain.

  • Hardcover: $23.95, 256 pages
  • Publisher: Doubleday; 1 edition (June 24, 2008)
  • ISBN-10: 0385519435
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385519434
  • Amazon Sales Rank: #13,388 

One Response to “Is Anyone Reading about McCain?”

  1. Marie Says:

    Most of the independent bookstores I’ve been to seem to feature Obama books prominently and have only one or two (if any) books about McCain. I have no data to back up my very casual and offhand observations however!