Water Cooler Picks

The books that people are buzzing about.

Water cooler Picks

This Town by Mark Leibovich

Tim Russert is dead.
But the room was alive.
Big Ticket Washington Funerals can make such great networking opportunities. Power mourners keep stampeding down the red carpets of the Kennedy Center, handing out business cards, touching base. And there is no time to waste in a gold rush, even (or especially) at a solemn tribal event like this.

Washington—This Town—might be loathed from every corner of the nation, yet these are fun and busy days at this nexus of big politics, big money, big media, and big vanity. There are no Democrats and Republicans anymore in the nation’s capital, just millionaires. That is the grubby secret of the place in the twenty-first century. You will always have lunch in This Town again. No matter how many elections you lose, apologies you make, or scandals you endure.

In This Town, Mark Leibovich, chief national correspondent for The New York Times Magazine, presents a blistering, stunning—and often hysterically funny—examination of our ruling class’s incestuous “media industrial complex.” Through his eyes, we discover how the funeral for a beloved newsman becomes the social event of the year. How political reporters are fetishized for their ability to get their names into the predawn e-mail sent out by the city’s most powerful and puzzled-over journalist. How a disgraced Hill aide can overcome ignominy and maybe emerge with a more potent “brand” than many elected members of Congress. And how an administration bent on “changing Washington” can be sucked into the ways of This Town with the same ease with which Tea Party insurgents can, once elected, settle into it like a warm bath.

Why are people talking about This Town?

It’s an insiders look at the ultimate insiders. If you are a political junkie who wants to know how the pols actually behave, this is your book.

Who’s talking about This Town?

Book review: Mark Leibovich’s ‘This Town’ over at Daily Kos

Mark Leibovich and the Preening Egos of ‘This Town’ at The Daily Beast

Hypocrisy, Thy Name Is (Duh!) Washington ‘This Town’ by Mark Leibovich at The New York Times

I listen to a decent amount of talk radio and heard the author, Mark Leibovich, interviewed on quite a few talk shows (The Agenda, Stand Up! with Pete Dominick, and Media Matters Radio to name a few.)

Is This Town a book being discussed at your water cooler?