Monday, September 1, 2008

Election Season Reading!

I spent the last week of August moving and setting up my new apartment, to the company of WNYC’s coverage of the Democratic National Convention. I’m now totally addicted to NPR. It was an excellent week to have time for all this radio listening, and I was completely re-invigorated about the election and the democratic process in general.

The weekend downtime between the two conventions made me think about where else I can get my political fix once the conventions are over.

First and foremost, of course, is DECLARE YOURSELF. A collection of powerful essays about the importance of raising your voice and using your vote!

The President’s Daughter quartet by Ellen Emerson White
The President’s Daughter
White House Autumn
Long Live the Queen
Long May She Reign
Ellen Emerson White is a brilliant writer, and these four books center around Meg, whose mother runs for President and wins. Smart, funny, dry, and completely absorbing. I read Long Live the Queen back in junior high and it’s a book that has stuck vividly with me ever since.

The Attolia books by Megan Whalen Turner
The Thief
The Queen of Attolia
The King of Attolia
Okay, these are fantasy, but they are are utterly astounding with the twists, turns, and political intrigue. They are must-reads for absolutely everyone. Eugenides is one of the Best. Characters. Ever.

The Future Dictionary of America
Funny mock-dictionary that came out a few years ago.
The Partly Cloudy Patriot by Sarah Vowell
She writes about history and politics often, and has some great essays about the 2000 election.

For levity:
America (the book) by the Daily Show
I Am America (And So Can You) by Stephen Colbert

For watching:
The West Wing
I am a HUGE West Wing fan. Huge. Every season is fantastic. (Except for season 5, which is dead to me. Don’t even bother with it, you don’t need it.) Best for election/campaign-related viewing? The first two episodes of the second season, season 4, the end of season 6, and season 7. I love seeing behind-the-scenes of any process, and it’s a witty, superbly well-written and well-acted show that gives you hope in politics.


  1. I just read The Thief for the first time a couple of weeks ago, and I agree it is just fantastic! Now I need to go read the next two in the series. And I read that Megan Whalen Turner is working on the fourth book...

  2. There aren't words to describe how unbelievably good Queen of Attolia and King of Attolia are. And all three books are even more astounding upon re-read. Seriously, these books completely blow me away every single time.

  3. *hangs head* I still haven't read Queen or King. I have both of them and just haven't gotten to them yet.

  4. Angie! Tsk tsk! You will like QUEEN and KING *so much.*