This true story of two decorated combat veterans who find a new way to save their comrades and heal their country is “a great look at two of the best veteran organizations going and the incredible humans who make the effort work” (Jon Stewart).

In Charlie Mike, a true account that “reads like a novel” (Publishers Weekly) and “explodes like a thriller” (The Huffington Post), Klein tells the dramatic story of Eric Greitens and Jake Wood, larger-than-life war heroes who come home and use their military values to help others.

Wounded in Iraq, Navy SEAL Eric Greitens returns home to find that his fellow veterans all want the same thing: to continue to serve their country. He founds The Mission Continues to provide paid public service fellowships for wounded veterans. One of the first fellows is former Marine sergeant Jake Wood, a natural leader who begins Team Rubicon, organizing 9/11 veterans for dangerous disaster relief projects around the world. “We do chaos,” he says.

“A deep and compelling exploration of a group of young veterans determined to continue serving after leaving the military” (The Washington Post), this is a story that hasn’t been told before—a saga of lives saved, not wasted. The chaos these soldiers face isn’t only in the streets of Haiti after the 2010 earthquake or in New York City after Hurricane Sandy—it’s also in the lives of their fellow veterans. Charlie Mike shows how Greitens and Wood draw on the military virtues of discipline and selflessness to guide others towards inner peace and, ultimately, to help build a more vigorous nation.
Joe Klein, best-selling author of Primary Colors and one of our most brilliant political analysts, now tackles the subject he knows best: Bill Clinton. Astute, even-handed, and keenly intelligent, The Natural is the only book to read if you want to understand exactly what happened–to the military, to the economy, to the American people, to the country–during Bill Clinton’s presidency, and how the decisions made during his tenure affect all of us today.

Much has been written about Clinton, but The Natural is the first work to cut through the gossip, scandals, media hype, and emotional turbulence that Clinton always engendered, to step back and rationally analyze the eight years of his tenure, a period during which America rose to unprecedented levels of prosperity. Joe Klein puts that record into perspective, showing us what worked and what didn’t, exactly what was accomplished and why, and who was responsible for the successes and the failures.

We see how the Clinton White House functioned on the inside, how it dealt with the maneuvers of Congress and the Gingrich revolution, and who held power and made the decisions during the endless crises that beset the administration. Klein’s access to the White House over the years as a journalist gave him a prime spot from which to view every crucial event–both political and personal–and he sets them forth in an insightful, readable, and completely engrossing manner.

The Natural is stern in its criticism and convincing with its praise. It will cause endless debate amongst friends and foes of the Clinton administration. It is a book that anyone interested in contemporary politics, in American history, or in the functioning of our democracy, should read.
From the author of Primary Colors, “a remarkably sensitive story of a generation” (The New York Times Book Review): The critically acclaimed true story of five Marines who fought together in a bloody battle during the Vietnam War, barely escaping with their lives, and of what happened when they came home.

In 1981, while the country was celebrating the end of the Iran hostage crisis, an unemployed Vietnam veteran named Gary Cooper went berserk with a gun, angry over the jubilant welcome the hostages received in contrast to his own homecoming from Vietnam, and was killed in a fight with police. In what has been called “the most eloquent work of nonfiction to emerge from Vietnam since Michael Herr’s Dispatches” (The New York Times), Joe Klein tells Cooper’s story, as well as the stories of four of the other vets in Cooper’s platoon.

The story begins with an ambush and a grisly battle in the Que Son Valley in 1967, but Payback is less about remembering the war and more about examining its long-term effects on the grunts who fought it. Klein fills in the next fifteen years of these Marines’ lives after they return home, with “the sort of fine and private detail one ordinarily finds only in fiction” (People). The experiences of these five men capture the struggles of a whole generation of Vietnam veterans and their families. Klein’s “near-hypnotic” account (Daily News, New York) is, to this day, both a remarkable piece of reporting and “some of the most vivid, harrowing, and emotionally honest writing to come out of Vietnam” (The Washington Post Book World).
People on the right are furious. People on the left are livid. And the center isn’t holding. There is only one thing on which almost everyone agrees: there is something very wrong in Washington. The country is being run by pollsters. Few politicians are able to win the voters’ trust. Blame abounds and personal responsibility is nowhere to be found. There is a cynicism in Washington that appalls those in every state, red or blue. The question is: Why? The more urgent question is: What can be done about it?
Few people are more qualified to deal with both questions than Joe Klein.
There are many loud and opinionated voices on the political scene, but no one sees or writes with the clarity that this respected observer brings to the table. He has spent a lifetime enmeshed in politics, studying its nuances, its quirks, and its decline. He is as angry and fed up as the rest of us, so he has decided to do something about it—in these pages, he vents, reconstructs, deconstructs, and reveals how and why our leaders are less interested in leading than they are in the “permanent campaign” that political life has become.
The book opens with a stirring anecdote from the night of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s assassination. Klein re-creates the scene of Robert Kennedy’s appearance in a black neighborhood in Indianapolis, where he gave a gut-wrenching, poetic speech that showed respect for the audience, imparted dignity to all who listened, and quelled a potential riot. Appearing against the wishes of his security team, it was one of the last truly courageous and spontaneous acts by an American politician—and it is no accident that Klein connects courage to spontaneity. From there, Klein begins his analysis—campaign by campaign—of how things went wrong. From the McGovern campaign polling techniques to Roger Ailes’s combative strategy for Nixon; from Reagan’s reinvention of the Republican Party to Lee Atwater’s equally brilliant reinvention of behind-the-scenes strategizing; from Jimmy Carter to George H. W. Bush to Bill Clinton to George W.—as well as inside looks at the losing sides—we see how the Democrats become diffuse and frightened, how the system becomes unbalanced, and how politics becomes less and less about ideology and more and more about how to gain and keep power. By the end of one of the most dismal political runs in history—Kerry’s 2004 campaign for president—we understand how such traits as courage, spontaneity, and leadership have disappeared from our political landscape.
In a fascinating final chapter, the author refuses to give easy answers since the push for easy answers has long been part of the problem. But he does give thoughtful solutions that just may get us out of this mess—especially if any of the 2008 candidates happen to be paying attention.
This true story of two decorated combat veterans who find a new way to save their comrades and heal their country is “a great look at two of the best veteran organizations going and the incredible humans who make the effort work” (Jon Stewart).

In Charlie Mike, a true account that “reads like a novel” (Publishers Weekly) and “explodes like a thriller” (The Huffington Post), Klein tells the dramatic story of Eric Greitens and Jake Wood, larger-than-life war heroes who come home and use their military values to help others.

Wounded in Iraq, Navy SEAL Eric Greitens returns home to find that his fellow veterans all want the same thing: to continue to serve their country. He founds The Mission Continues to provide paid public service fellowships for wounded veterans. One of the first fellows is former Marine sergeant Jake Wood, a natural leader who begins Team Rubicon, organizing 9/11 veterans for dangerous disaster relief projects around the world. “We do chaos,” he says.

“A deep and compelling exploration of a group of young veterans determined to continue serving after leaving the military” (The Washington Post), this is a story that hasn’t been told before—a saga of lives saved, not wasted. The chaos these soldiers face isn’t only in the streets of Haiti after the 2010 earthquake or in New York City after Hurricane Sandy—it’s also in the lives of their fellow veterans. Charlie Mike shows how Greitens and Wood draw on the military virtues of discipline and selflessness to guide others towards inner peace and, ultimately, to help build a more vigorous nation.
Joe Klein, best-selling author of Primary Colors and one of our most brilliant political analysts, now tackles the subject he knows best: Bill Clinton. Astute, even-handed, and keenly intelligent, The Natural is the only book to read if you want to understand exactly what happened-to the military, to the economy, to the American people, to the country-during Bill Clinton's presidency, and how the decisions made during his tenure affect all of us today. Much has been written about Clinton, but The Natural is the first work to cut through the gossip, scandals, media hype, and emotional turbulence that Clinton always engendered, to step back and rationally analyze the eight years of his tenure, a period during which America rose to unprecedented levels of prosperity. Joe Klein puts that record into perspective, showing us what worked and what didn't, exactly what was accomplished and why, and who was responsible for the successes and the failures. We see how the Clinton White House functioned on the inside, how it dealt with the maneuvers of Congress and the Gingrich revolution, and who held power and made the decisions during the endless crises that beset the administration. Klein's access to the White House over the years as a journalist gave him a prime spot from which to view every crucial event-both political and personal-and he sets them forth in an insightful, readable, and completely engrossing manner. The Natural is stern in its criticism and convincing with its praise. It will cause endless debate amongst friends and foes of the Clinton administration. It is a book that anyone interested in contemporary politics, in American history, or in the functioning of our democracy, should read.
People on the right are furious. People on the left are livid. And the center isn’t holding. There is only one thing on which almost everyone agrees: there is something very wrong in Washington. The country is being run by pollsters. Few politicians are able to win the voters’ trust. Blame abounds and personal responsibility is nowhere to be found. There is a cynicism in Washington that appalls those in every state, red or blue. The question is: Why? The more urgent question is: What can be done about it?
Few people are more qualified to deal with both questions than Joe Klein.
There are many loud and opinionated voices on the political scene, but no one sees or writes with the clarity that this respected observer brings to the table. He has spent a lifetime enmeshed in politics, studying its nuances, its quirks, and its decline. He is as angry and fed up as the rest of us, so he has decided to do something about it—in these pages, he vents, reconstructs, deconstructs, and reveals how and why our leaders are less interested in leading than they are in the “permanent campaign” that political life has become.
The book opens with a stirring anecdote from the night of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s assassination. Klein re-creates the scene of Robert Kennedy’s appearance in a black neighborhood in Indianapolis, where he gave a gut-wrenching, poetic speech that showed respect for the audience, imparted dignity to all who listened, and quelled a potential riot. Appearing against the wishes of his security team, it was one of the last truly courageous and spontaneous acts by an American politician—and it is no accident that Klein connects courage to spontaneity. From there, Klein begins his analysis—campaign by campaign—of how things went wrong. From the McGovern campaign polling techniques to Roger Ailes’s combative strategy for Nixon; from Reagan’s reinvention of the Republican Party to Lee Atwater’s equally brilliant reinvention of behind-the-scenes strategizing; from Jimmy Carter to George H. W. Bush to Bill Clinton to George W.—as well as inside looks at the losing sides—we see how the Democrats become diffuse and frightened, how the system becomes unbalanced, and how politics becomes less and less about ideology and more and more about how to gain and keep power. By the end of one of the most dismal political runs in history—Kerry’s 2004 campaign for president—we understand how such traits as courage, spontaneity, and leadership have disappeared from our political landscape.
In a fascinating final chapter, the author refuses to give easy answers since the push for easy answers has long been part of the problem. But he does give thoughtful solutions that just may get us out of this mess—especially if any of the 2008 candidates happen to be paying attention.
People on the right are furious. People on the left are livid. And the center isn’t holding. There is only one thing on which almost everyone agrees: there is something very wrong in Washington. The country is being run by pollsters. Few politicians are able to win the voters’ trust. Blame abounds and personal responsibility is nowhere to be found. There is a cynicism in Washington that appalls those in every state, red or blue. The question is: Why? The more urgent question is: What can be done about it?
Few people are more qualified to deal with both questions than Joe Klein.
There are many loud and opinionated voices on the political scene, but no one sees or writes with the clarity that this respected observer brings to the table. He has spent a lifetime enmeshed in politics, studying its nuances, its quirks, and its decline. He is as angry and fed up as the rest of us, so he has decided to do something about it—in these pages, he vents, reconstructs, deconstructs, and reveals how and why our leaders are less interested in leading than they are in the “permanent campaign” that political life has become.
The book opens with a stirring anecdote from the night of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s assassination. Klein re-creates the scene of Robert Kennedy’s appearance in a black neighborhood in Indianapolis, where he gave a gut-wrenching, poetic speech that showed respect for the audience, imparted dignity to all who listened, and quelled a potential riot. Appearing against the wishes of his security team, it was one of the last truly courageous and spontaneous acts by an American politician—and it is no accident that Klein connects courage to spontaneity. From there, Klein begins his analysis—campaign by campaign—of how things went wrong. From the McGovern campaign polling techniques to Roger Ailes’s combative strategy for Nixon; from Reagan’s reinvention of the Republican Party to Lee Atwater’s equally brilliant reinvention of behind-the-scenes strategizing; from Jimmy Carter to George H. W. Bush to Bill Clinton to George W.—as well as inside looks at the losing sides—we see how the Democrats become diffuse and frightened, how the system becomes unbalanced, and how politics becomes less and less about ideology and more and more about how to gain and keep power. By the end of one of the most dismal political runs in history—Kerry’s 2004 campaign for president—we understand how such traits as courage, spontaneity, and leadership have disappeared from our political landscape.
In a fascinating final chapter, the author refuses to give easy answers since the push for easy answers has long been part of the problem. But he does give thoughtful solutions that just may get us out of this mess—especially if any of the 2008 candidates happen to be paying attention.
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