From Publishers Weekly
"I talk as simply and directly to people as possible," claims Dean, and though his official campaign biography-cum-manifesto is notable for its plainspokenness, it mostly lacks the passionate forcefulness the front-running Democratic candidate has shown on the campaign trail. The toning down appears deliberate; not only does Dean apologize for intemperate remarks, he goes out of his way to describe himself as a nonradical during his late '60s college years and compares his fiscal outlook to that of his "moderate business-oriented Republican" father. (He also has kind words for President Bush and his family, though he turns critical on the subject of the president's aides.) The account of his childhood and college years is bland, the result of downplaying his family's wealth. A feeling of enthusiasm doesn't set in until his decision to enroll in medical school, perhaps because this is also the period when he met his wife. Dean's flat facade also cracks in passages recalling the circumstances of his older brother's capture (and probable execution) by the Pathet Lao in Laos in 1974. Obliquely touching on the emotional effects of this trauma on his family, Dean also discusses how it has increased his reluctance to send American soldiers into combat and put their families through the same process. The final sections of the book veer away from the personal to the political, and much of its rhetoric will be instantly recognizable to anyone who's seen a Dean stump speech, possibly frustrating those who want to learn more deeply about the man and what he stands for.
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About the Author
Governor Howard Dean
is a physician who previously shared a medical practice with his wife, Dr. Judith Steinberg. He became governor of Vermont in 1991 and served until 2003. He campaigned for the Democratic nomination in the 2004 presidential election and served as honorary chairman of Democracy for America, an organization dedicated to building a grassroots network for the Democratic Party. He is currently the chair of the Democratic National Committee.