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193 of 233 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cogent, detailed, fair ... and illuminating
Geoffrey Dunn presents a cogent and very readable analysis of how and why an un-vetted Ms Palin appeared suddenly on the US national scene during the last Presidential campaign. He postulates reasons for her ability to captivate the attention of a wide swath of the American public, whether pro- or anti-Palin. He contributes new information that enhances our understanding...
Published on May 10, 2011 by Ibadan

versus
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars I'm not a cheerleader for Sarah Palin, but
This author had only one thought in mind, too dis Sarah Palin and he did that extremely well. Even a compliment was followed by a "but". Much too tilted for me.
Published 5 months ago by betty


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193 of 233 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cogent, detailed, fair ... and illuminating, May 10, 2011
This review is from: The Lies of Sarah Palin: The Untold Story Behind Her Relentless Quest for Power (Hardcover)
Geoffrey Dunn presents a cogent and very readable analysis of how and why an un-vetted Ms Palin appeared suddenly on the US national scene during the last Presidential campaign. He postulates reasons for her ability to captivate the attention of a wide swath of the American public, whether pro- or anti-Palin. He contributes new information that enhances our understanding of the deep background of Palin, giving vivid accounts from first-person "we-were-there" interviewees who saw her evolution within Alaska, as well as from perches within the McCain campaign and from the media. For example, his publication of her notarized application for Wasilla police dispatcher reveals her self-attested lack of a college degree.

Dunn documents that far from just the surface entertainment value of her "bloopers" and mannerisms and her appeal as a woman candidate, we must pay closer attention to the "meaning" of Palin's rise and persistence in American politics. In this well-written account of the life and times of his subject from childhood to the present, he relates the factors of her experience an personality that lead her to succeed so well in railing "against" long-held American values of fairness and justice, while "seeming" to uphold these values. For it well may be a high-pitched dog whistle effect that is responsible for her ability to call out a mean-spirited streak among segments of the far right and among the disillusioned "bitter" faction. Dunn doesn't shy away from naming and describing the racism that underlies some of her ideological statements, nor does he flinch from a detailed examination of her "call-to-arms" metaphors and inept public statements after the unfortunate incident of the attack upon a US Representative(in Arizona).

A most illuminating read.
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204 of 248 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Finally, a 'real journalist' points out the Quitter Queen's lack of clothes, May 12, 2011
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This review is from: The Lies of Sarah Palin: The Untold Story Behind Her Relentless Quest for Power (Hardcover)
Given the amount of material covered by this book, it is very well structured, and moves along compellingly. Dunn manages to overlap many layers of events in a way that doesn't compromise overall coherency or readability.

Even though there were few novelties for the tiny minority of truly seasoned Palin-watchers, Dunn reveals many bombshells which have--inconceivably--not gotten mainstream play in the slightest, including destructive behaviors which intentionally undermined the McCain/Palin campaign (or "Palin/McCain" campaign, as Sarah would have it).

Dunn calls 'em the way he sees 'em and, refreshingly, has returned the words "lie", "lying", and "liar" to their important place in public discourse. He is not afraid to challenge Mrs. Palin on her ceaseless, virtually unpunctuated, untruths... including calling her out on her false claims of having released her youngest son's birth record. Very welcome were the expansive background context of Alaskan politics along with a closer look than we've previously had of what was happening in the McCain camp along the campaign trail.

I have a small number of criticisms: Dunn seems to take Mrs. Palin's doctor's letter--submitted at the last moment--at face value, despite knowing that Palin has composed and distributed falsified letters on her own behalf as a matter of course throughout her political career. He didn't connect the timing of her pregnancy announcement with the McCain nomination (which occurred just one day earlier). I think he could have gone into more detail about the egregious sports complex fiasco (built on land the city of Wasilla did not own, and which left the town of 5000 or so at the time more than $20million in debt), and he did not even mention "Dairygate" (Palin's handing over of a state dairy to a group of incompetent friends, nominally privatizing it but continuing to provide them with public subsidies).

The author does give a deservedly significant amount of space to the problems of the Alaskan native villages whose dire situation during the winter of 2009 Mrs. Palin pointedly and willfully ignored, to the extent that her inaction attracted nationwide attention. Then, despite the spotlight, Palin did what she always does: she lied about the situation.

I hope this well-written book can overcome the censorship it will face (and is facing, as bookstores such as Barnes & Noble have, in some cases refused to order even a single copy, ironically opting instead to heavily promote the noted professional serial liar Andrew Breitbart, a Palin ally, perhaps not coincidentally). Furthermore, I hope people will have the opportunity to come to appreciate, not only how deeply dysfunctional Mrs. Palin is, but, how deeply dysfunctional is the political and mediatical system that allowed her to actually succeed to the extent that she has. Mr. Dunn's book is certainly an important step in this public process, which needs to happen--quickly--if the American republic is to have any hope of survival.
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82 of 98 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well done! Explaining the seemingly unexplainable in straightforward, well-written prose., May 13, 2011
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This review is from: The Lies of Sarah Palin: The Untold Story Behind Her Relentless Quest for Power (Hardcover)
Wow! Want an in-depth peek into the complex "wiring" of Sarah Palin? "The Lies of Sarah Palin" by Geoffrey Dunn will give you just that. This book is extremely well-written. It is investigative journalism at it's best, including first-hand accounts and historical facts.

Dunn writes about the pattern of deception that has shrouded the Heath-Palin clan from the get-go, and how this pattern has been internalized by Sarah Palin, both personally and professionally. He shows how the effects of her consequent and worsening erratic behavior reverberates throughout all that she comes in contact with.

The writer is not particularly trying to "prove" anything here. He's simply offering a painstakingly-researched account of a heretofore unknown person, who has who has been in our faces every single day for the last 2.75 years. This is a hugely important book that needs to be in front of as many readers as possible! Highly recommended!
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94 of 113 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Lies of Sarah Palin, May 10, 2011
This review is from: The Lies of Sarah Palin: The Untold Story Behind Her Relentless Quest for Power (Hardcover)
In this admirable piece of scholarship, author Dunn proves himself remarkably free of the two forms of bad faith that generally plague the anti-Palin camp. He is neither secretly in thrall to her supposed charisma, taking square aim instead at Palin's abundant defects, nor, like so many on the left (and viewers of Saturday Night Live), does he long for her continued presence on the political scene, either for her entertainment value or because she is a thorn in the side of Republican leadership. Dunn would rather see her disappear entirely form political life, indeed from any public forum, and this book should serve his purpose well. Then again, those who still need convincing are probably beyond convincing.
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138 of 168 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent... well worth reading., May 13, 2011
By 
Edrice (Los Angeles) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Lies of Sarah Palin: The Untold Story Behind Her Relentless Quest for Power (Hardcover)
Brilliantly conceived and beautifully executed.
The phenomenon that is Sarah Palin is laid bare by the painstaking research and the mighty pen of Geoffrey Dunn for the world to see...and it's a sobering picture.
I was fascinated by the details of the evolution of her particular pathology... the dysfunctional childhood that laid the groundwork for her inability to deal with reality, her persistent immaturity, her inability to admit to error, her denial of truth, her never ending vendettas, and her refusal to admit defeat even when it stares her in the face.
Winning, for Palin, seems to have taken precedence over sanity, decency, rationality and truth
The details of her haphazard rise to power, her adolescent, destructive ambition, how it was utilized and how it played out in our modern political arena are fascinating and chilling.
This is well worth reading for so many reasons. I devoured it and will now go back and read at leisure.
Thank you Mr. Dunn for a job well done.
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88 of 106 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well worth the read, May 13, 2011
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This review is from: The Lies of Sarah Palin: The Untold Story Behind Her Relentless Quest for Power (Hardcover)
Geoffrey Dunn's book is well worth your time and money. Though many of the events described in this book are known to most people who follow politics, the "behind the scenes" information Dunn provides further illuminates how woefully unprepared Mrs. Palin was for a national political campaign. Incurious about the world around her, uneducated, divisive, she covets power for the sake of power. There is a huge dissonance between her actions and her avowed Christianity.
What is particularly disturbing is her careless disregard for the villagers in the bush who were freezing and starving and unable to get her attention. When she finally did show up at a couple of the villages with Franklin Graham, she had the audacity to lecture the villagers and tell them they needed new leadership from their elders. There was no acknowledgement of the poor fishing season, the unusually harsh and extended winter. Instead, she lied about her husband's experiences growing up as a native. Also, when Mrs. Palin did make it to see the villagers, it was approximately five weeks after relief efforts had already been initiated by concerned citizens and bloggers. At one point within those five weeks, Mrs. Palin had been approached with requests for assistance in flying the food and fuel collected to the remote villages. That request was denied and Mrs. Palin's office again stated they were looking into things. This seemed to be their standard reply on the numerous occasions they were asked to help. She was very dismissive to a village elder who attempted to talk with her about the people in Emmonack and other villages.
So much for a servant's heart.
Throughout this book, time after time, Mrs. Palin is revealed to be dismissive to other people, petty, vengeful, and egocentric. Her behavior the night of the presidential election is also extremely revealing. She is determined to give a concession speech. But Senator McCain and Steve Schmidt recognize the importance of the moment for our country. They recognize it is not the time for further polarizing and divisive statements. But she will not take no for an answer. She asks at least four times, the last time as they were taking the stage with Senator McCain and his wife, Cindy. After Senator McCain's speech, he and his wife, Cindy, leave the stage and Mrs. Palin gestures to her family to join her and her husband on the stage. It's at this point, Schmidt, realizing how determined she has been to give her speech, orders the microphone and lights to the stage to be cut. If only the American people could be so lucky and find a way to cut her microphone now.
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140 of 171 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sure to become a classic of political history, May 11, 2011
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This review is from: The Lies of Sarah Palin: The Untold Story Behind Her Relentless Quest for Power (Hardcover)
Geoffrey Dunn has written the best book yet on the controversial phenomenon known as Sarah Palin. What he terms the "pathology of deceit" appears to inform every aspect of Palin's life. People who have known Palin since early childhood chose to speak to Dunn in great detail, and with genuine concern. Some of them volunteered answers to questions that Dunn had yet to ask ("FACT!" declared one correspondent, about an intimate family detail). Palin has become well known for "throwing under the bus" the co-workers, supporters, and even friends who no longer serve her purposes, a great many of whom spoke to Dunn. Mentors who helped Palin win early elections watched with dismay as Palin embarked upon what Dunn calls a "dysfunctional" stint as mayor of Wasilla, which left the small town deeply in debt.

A slipshod, inadequate vetting process put the then-Alaska governor on the ticket as John McCain's running mate in 2008, and the cracks in the not-always-vivacious candidate's sparkly exterior began to yawn in impenetrable chasms almost immediately. (McCain advisor A.B. Culvahouse summed up Palin as "High risk, high reward": Correct on the former.) "She knows nothing," snapped McCain advisor Steve Schmidt, a methodical and disciplined man whom Palin clearly drove to distraction with her erratic behavior. Schmidt called Palin's ghostwritten memoir Going Rogue "one hundred percent fiction." It is impossible to know who feels more burned about the disastrous arranged "marriage"--McCain? Or Palin?--but Dunn provides myriad examples of just what went wrong on the ticket in the fall of 2008, including a plethora of insider e-mails seen here for the first time. It's a mesmerizing education on just how daily life functions (or doesn't) on the biggest campaign trail of all.

After losing the election, "[Palin] just never made it home. She just never came back," noted Beth Kertulla, Alaska House minority leader. In 2009, one of the coldest winters and worst fish harvests on record further strained then-Governor Palin's already poor relationship with the Alaska Native population, who were forced to choose between heating their homes or feeding their children. Tribal elder Nicholas Tucker of Emmonak's pleas for assistance went unheeded by the governor--and rudely cut off in mid-sentence by Palin when the two finally met--until an SOS broadcast widely by Internet brought assistance to those in need. Dunn's first-hand knowledge of Alaska and first-rate research takes the reader where few of us, in truth, have ventured.

Dunn really shines when it comes to interweaving and acknowledging previously reported segments of the Palin story with the vast body of his own investigative work. For a reader who has not paid much attention to Palin, who quit halfway through her first term as governor in 2009, you'll find the whole story right here. And if you have followed the divisive and irresponsible trajectory of Palin's career, there's a ton of new information that shoots off in every direction, just like the "fireworks" her once-giddy pals in the press described.

Five stars is probably five too few.
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75 of 90 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well worth the price and the read., May 11, 2011
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This review is from: The Lies of Sarah Palin: The Untold Story Behind Her Relentless Quest for Power (Hardcover)
Geoffrey Dunn has an amazing way with words. To take a subject like Sarah Palin and itemize not only what she does, but WHY she does things is an amazing task. Filled with details and highly sourced, the book takes the reader on a roller coaster of Palin lies, proving she was not only unfit to be a Vice Presidential candidate, but that she couldn't run a small city (Wasilla) without hiring a City Manager. Totally out of her element, Ms Palin has attempted to plow herself into the political discourse by lying about literally everything in her small, pathetic little life and career. Unable to form a cohesive sentence, remember facts, or learn from flash cards, it becomes obvious that Palin is only about making as much money as possible as quickly as she can before people realize she belongs behind bars in a rubber room. Even the McCain Presidential Campaign Committee admits she was unable to learn anything.

From TrooperGate, DairyGate and then on to her "targeting" of Congressman Gabrielle Giffords who was shot in Tucson in January 2011 - all the details of these squirrely, mixed up sociopathic behaviors Palin exhibits on a regular basis are covered in great detail. Her scattered thoughts, her word salad talking, her multiple and often hilarious flip flops make for a delightful read.

If you like Sarah Palin, this is not the book for you. If you are on the fence, and maybe curious as to what the hype is all about, this book may very well cause you to take sides. In other circumstances, Palin may well be institutionalized by now. How sad that a person with this lack of depth or character has gone as far as she has based on charisma. Sad and pathetic, Palin struggles on. Her future has yet to be written, but if her past is an example, she will not succeed in her wildest dreams.
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61 of 74 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Lies of Sarah Palin: The Untold Story Behind Her Relentless Quest for Power, May 13, 2011
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Although nearly all the information in this book was already out in some form, Dunn did a wonderful job of bringing it all together to show the true picture of Sarah Palin. This woman truly scares me. I am afraid for my country as long as someone like this can hold any form of power at all. I just can't believe that there is still somewhere around 30% that support her. What is the illiteracy rate in the US?
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58 of 71 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars She's not even a good liar, May 15, 2011
This review is from: The Lies of Sarah Palin: The Untold Story Behind Her Relentless Quest for Power (Hardcover)
I just finished the book. It's well written and easy to get drawn in and stay up til 4:00 am reading it. I guess I've lived a charmed life but I rarely encounter adults who lie, so the descriptions seemed so surreal. I've followed the blogs but there is new information in the book. Her response to the freezing and starving villagers for example. Some of her lies have some fraction of truth but the lie about her husband leaving his northern native village to get a job didn't have a strand of truth and yet she thought she could pull that off twice. I was apalled that mother Heath was proud of having stolen books from the public library, depriving others of the opportunity to access information. Sarah must have formed her lack of understanding of the concept of free speech from her mother and father. What a messed up family-four generations of them.

Mr. Dunn, how about The lies of Bristol Palin. Surely there is enough information there to fill a book also.

What a disgrace John McCain is and the others who failed to vet her. They didn't even pick up the phone and ask the republicans in Alaska for some background on Palin.
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