Washington, D.C., is the final installment in Gore Vidal's Narratives of Empire,his acclaimed six-volume series of historical novels about the American past. It offers an illuminating portrait of our republic from the time of the New Deal to the McCar-thy era.
Widely regarded as Vidal's ultimate comment on how the American political system degrades those who participate in it, Washington, D.C. is a stunning tale of corruption and diseased ambitions. It traces the fortunes of James Burden Day, a powerful conservative senator who is eyeing the presidency; Clay Overbury, a pragmatic young congressional aide with political aspirations of his own; and Blaise Sanford, a ruthless newspaper tycoon who understands the importance of money and image in modern politics. With characteristic wit and insight, Vidal chronicles life in the nation's capital at a time when these men and others transformed America into "possibly the last empire on earth."
"Washington, D.C. may well be the finest of contemporary novels about the capital," said The New Yorker, and the Times Literary Supplement deemed it "a prodigiously skilled and clever performance."
From the Hardcover edition.
Gore Vidal is one of America's most erudite and imaginative historical and political thinkers.
This angle does not work and too much time is spent on sexual shennanigans and other sundry episodes to give the book any genuine thrust (so-to-speak).
He is superb at illuminating the crassness, vulgarity and humanity of everyone he describes and every event that he illuminates.
If you like Gore Vidal...which I do....this is such a timely book in spite of its age. He is superb at illuminating the crassness, vulgarity and humanity of everyone he describes... Read morePublished 8 months ago by Diana of the Hunt
1) Plot (3 stars) - In manipulative, superficial Washington DC of the 1940s, one man strives to rise up the political system while those around him react to his wake. Read morePublished 12 months ago by One Guy's Opinion
Loud and clear, Gore Vidal's voice in all his books, and in the novel WASHINGTON DC, cannot be mistaken. Read morePublished on March 28, 2012 by Nicholas J. Faust
I've long been a great admirer of Gore Vidal's political and historical essays. But except for his novels Julian (which I read in my youth and greatly liked), Live from Golgotha... Read morePublished on October 11, 2008 by Kerry Walters
The books that comprise the "Narratives of Empire" series were not written in order, and if you're reading them in order the cracks show up here in the sixth and final... Read morePublished on September 2, 2002 by Penner
I bought this book expecting to read a historical, political novel. I quickly realized that the politics of the novel only made up about 1/4 of the story. Read morePublished on April 12, 2001