From Publishers Weekly
Albright proposes to "combine the personal with policy" in these memoirs, a sensible narrative strategy, considering her emblematic struggles as a working mother breaking through the glass ceiling of the foreign policy establishment to become U.N. ambassador and secretary of state. Albright's recollections of her background as a child refugee from Czechoslovakia and its twin scourges of Nazism and Communism (later, she accounts for the belated discovery of her Jewish heritage) suggest a basis for her belief in "assertive multilateralism." Although she laments coining this derided term, it's an apt name for her doctrine that human rights should be protected by the international community, led by American power. In the Clinton administration, this was the hawkish position, opposed by Colin Powell, William Cohen and others more cautious about military commitments. Albright treats these and other rivalries with restraint, but she is relatively candid about policy and personality conflicts, to an extent unusual in a diplomat and welcome in an autobiographer. Pitched at a popular audience, Albright's anecdotal style is engagingly direct, but it's not suited to mounting a comprehensive defense of humanitarian interventionism in light of failures in Somalia, Rwanda and Bosnia. Albright is willing to admit mistakes, though she generally pursues the political memoirist's standard agenda of spinning the historical record. Filled with shrewd character sketches of world leaders, Albright's descriptions of the Balkan conflicts, the Middle East peace process and other critical negotiations are thorough and insightful. This memoir captures the disarmingly blunt purposefulness that made its author an irrepressible force in foreign affairs.
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" Albright's deft memoir is the quintessential tale of her transitional generation of middle-class American women." -- The Miami Herald
"A fascinating mix of the official and the unofficial, the political and the personal." -- Rocky Mountain News
"Candid, [she] veers comfortably between the personal and the political. Offers a rare female perspective on diplomatic life." -- Time Out New York
"From mother and socialite to professor and secretary of state...she is frank, assertive...straight-shooting." -- The New York Times
"Her portraits of foreign leaders are lively and evocative...she creates a sense of policy made by real people." -- The New Yorker
"Madeleine Albright has written a different kind of memoir...It's Albright unplugged." -- USA Today
"One of the most diverting political bios in recent memory." -- Entertainment Weekly
"The fascinating story of a remarkable person who has served her country well." -- Dallas Morning News
"Thorough and insightful. Filled with shrewd character sketches of world leaders...Albright's style is engagingly direct." -- Publishers Weekly
"Unlike other memoirs, it has hardly a hint of score settling." -- Time