, first published in 1988, is like a modern version of Machiavelli's The Prince
, only much more richly illustrated, with anecdotes drawn from talk-show host Chris Matthews's stint as a congressional staffer (where he worked for, among others, renowned Speaker of the House Tip O'Neill). Discussing such basic principles as "It's not who you know; it's who you get to know" and "Don't get mad, don't get even--get ahead," Matthews not only dishes out choice Washington insider info, he has over the years inspired many readers to apply his principles for political success to their own professional lives.
"A thoroughly entertaining book about modern-day American politics and how it's played. . . . Hardball
is a must-read textbook that should be read with a marker." (The Wall Street Journal)
"Every so often a writer reads a book so incisive and so good that when he finally puts it down he says, 'Damn, I wish I had written this.' I just finished Christopher Matthews' Hardball.
And damn, I wish I had written this." (Stephen Stark The Washington Post
"Matthews is half Huck Finn and half Machiavelli in this exuberant guide to the great game of politics." (George F. Will)
"Savvy and amusing. . . . Fresh and original." (Christopher Lehmann-Haupt The New York Times
"Christopher Matthews writes about politics with relish—the way sports writers cover boxing." (Ben Bradlee author of A Good Life and Conversations with Kennedy
"People will be quoting Hardball
as long as the game of politics is played." (Hendrik Hertzberg The New Yorker
"The best in the business!" (Thomas P. "Tip" O'Neill, Jr.)
"Brilliant! God may take care of fools, drunks and the United States, but Chris Matthews has the goods on how Washington politicians take care of the rest of us." (Sam Donaldson)
"Chris Matthews hits a political homer with Hardball.
For political sagacity and humor, this ranks with the work of George Washington Plunkitt." (William Safire)
"In Washington, everyone says they 'practice' politics, and 'develop' policy. But to succeed they know they must 'play hardball.' This book smartly captures that central truth!" (Tim Russert)