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I have watched my DVD of the movie more than half a dozen times and, as much as I enjoy it each time, I have always thought that something was missing, some key bits of information needed to tie it all together.

Well, duh! The book has it all. Not in the tidy, linear progression from the morning after the Watergate break-in through the last explosive story clearly implicating Tricky Dick as in the movie, but rather the more realistic slice-of-life, back and forth and all around movements in search of tips, confirmations, just one more corroborating source so that day's story could be written and printed. Here we see the amazing scoops, the missed targets, dead-end ideas, leaps of faith, and more important, the dogged determination to know the larger story in all its awful complexity and sleazy criminality, using methods necessary in those pre-Gooogle days that would exhaust even the most robust investigative reported today.

The authors write like reporters---no purple prose, no unnecessary verbiage, few if any adjectives and adverbs, in a spare style that would please Sergeant Joe Friday and his predilection for "Just the facts, ma'am." The authors share their successes, and there were many, in a restrained manner just this side of "Aw, shucks," and do not shy away from their faults and close brushes with disaster because they made rookie reporter mistakes or tried pushing a particular envelope not only too far but almost off the table.

An excellent tale that, despite the obvious indices of "the way things were back in the day," still resonates today. Perhaps especially today.
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VINE VOICEon March 10, 2017
The recent political climate in this country has inspired me to read All the President’s Men. Since many people want to make an equivalency between the actions of Nixon/Watergate with the questions over Russia involvement in the electoral process for example. While I cannot provide a current events commentary, I will say that I was quite surprised by the contents of All the President’s Men and how doggedly the two reporters along with a cast of others chased down this story. I have a hard time picturing today’s media of talking heads and soundbites doing similar things.

All the Presidents Men is an unorthodox book in that its not the definitive story of Watergate, rather the tale of how Woodward and Bernstein got at the story of Watergate. Yet, through all their efforts, one arrives at a version of Watergate. (If that makes sense.) We meet the power-hungry villains and the good men who got caught up in the scandal and the reader is taken on a 350 page thrill ride, which is really hard to do when one knows the outcome of Watergate. I as a reader was sitting there on the edge of my seat wondering “Is this the moment it all falls apart for these guys”?

Does one get the absolute truth from All the Presidents Men? Probably not, but it may be closest we come depending on how much weight and credibility one gives the memoirs of Nixon officials.
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on February 16, 2015
In my early twenties, I had read 'All the President's Men' and, over thirty-years later, I decided to revisit the famous work by Mr. Woodward and Mr. Bernstein. It certainly has aged well and still holds up very nicely. The book is primarily about two young reporters doing old-fashioned muckraking in an effort to unravel who was behind the break-in at the Watergate. The Washington Post was never out to take down the Nixon Administration, but simply doing their jobs. Little did they realize that it would ultimately lead right into the vipers' pit and the President's downfall. The further their investigation went up the chain of command, the more concerned the Post became with the implications of their digging. Nixon and his henchmen were not people to be messed with especially when it was their fannies you were putting to the fire.

President Nixon and his morally-challenged acolytes did a great amount of harm that involved theft, illegal wiretapping, slush funds, obstruction of justice, and highly unethical campaign espionage as well as sabotage. The President's mindset, active participation, and surrounding himself with like-minded people to set this odious FUBAR into motion still impacts today's politics. The Republicans seem to have embraced these sort of tactics with more enthusiasm with such nasty political architects as Lee Atwater and the troll's disciple Karl Rove. It took a great deal of hard work and courage for the reporters to continually knock on doors and revisit uncooperative people. Fortunately for Woodward and Bernstein, they also were supported by able editors, the colorful Ben Bradlee and the owner Katharine Graham. For many months, the Washington Post was the only news organization that was trying to unravel the mystery and were especially hated by the White House. Nixon's paranoia and deep hatred of the press caused him to have zero qualms about trying to destroy the Post. This was serious hardball, folks. Once the investigations produced solid evidence that Tricky Dick and the other powerbrokers around him were in on the whole thing, it became every man out for himself in the administration with backstabbing others becoming the norm.

Mr. Woodward and Mr. Bernstein were very forthright about not only describing the triumphs but also their mistakes including some of their actions going over the line of proper journalism. It was very helpful that the book has photos of all the key players in the story. It's quite a gallery of rogues. Also, the Afterword written for the 40th-Anniversary edition does a good job explaining the seriousness, motivations and repercussions of President Nixon's unseemly actions. This is great riveting history. After finishing the book, I wondered, "Is it too late to dig up President Nixon and have him impeached?"
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on May 29, 2013
On June 17, 1972, five men were arrested for breaking into the Democratic National Committee headquarters at the Watergate building. All five were family men dressed in suits and caught with equipment in what appeared to be an elaborate plot to bug the DNC headquarters. What did it all mean?

Enter aspiring young Washington Post reporters Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward. With President Nixon's re-election committee denying any involvement in the plot, it appeared the Watergate story could have been ephemeral if not for the persistent investigative reporting of Woodward and Bernstein. Initially competing for the story, Woodward and Bernstein (sometimes referred to as "Woodstein") became partners when the advantages of working together became apparent to them. Contacts were mostly divided between the two so a personal relationship could be developed with sources, a journalistic necessity in the midst of a scandal in which few were willing to talk out of fear.

It wasn't long before the two reporters realized the plot went higher up than ever imagined. The sources who were willing to talk needed prodding and guesswork by Woodward and Bernstein in order to protect themselves. The most famous among these sources--and possibly the most famous informant in American history--was Deep Throat. The highly secretive man made sure that Woodward took extra precautions when scheduling middle-of-the-night meetings with him in a parking garage, which included taking several cabs to make sure he wasn't being followed. The only hint of his position in government that Woodward gives is his unique position to observe the Executive Branch. Throughout the book, Deep Throat provides accurate insider information, and turns out to be Woodward's most reliable source during the entire event.

Whether you lived through the Nixon presidency, or if the only thing you know is that Nixon resigned because of Watergate, this important book will give you the play-by-play in how investigative reporting contributed to the downfall of a president. "All the President's Men" reads like a political thriller from start to finish, and will leave you wanting more when it's over. For history buffs, political junkies, or any American who wants to know what Watergate was all about, this is an essential read. As my favorite book of all time, I can't recommend this book by Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein highly enough.
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on February 23, 2017
This book should be required reading in high school. Woodward and Bernstein worked tirelessly for some of the ultimate virtues of a democracy, truth and transparency. The book can be a dry read at times, but it is well organized so you can feel the thought process and logic that led to the discovery of who Nixon really was.
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This is an interesting book for many different reasons. First of all, this is a book as much about how journalism ought to be done as it is about what is being reported. At least two sources had to support everything they put in the paper and, if one of them disagreed with the conclusions or the facts of a story, that story never made the paper. And yes, that occasionally meant weeks without a Watergate story. Imagine that in these days of CNN and Fox assuring their viewers that the Supreme Court struck down the Affordable Care Act. Not only did Woodward and Bernstein have to read, they were expected to get it right.

Which is not to say that they did not make mistakes. If you’ve seen the movie, you have seen the most dramatic mistake they made about Haldeman. But there was another, earlier error that wronged three men and truly made life difficult for them. Or, as Woodward and Bernstein put it in their book, “The stigma of Watergate stayed with [one of them], and he had great difficulty obtaining a job.”

Watergate, which almost by accident, “made” these gutsy, chutzpah-filled reporters also was the undoing of some. Some who were not guilty.
And then there is the story itself. A story that was deeply shocking. Campaign funds used to spy on the opposition, to lie about the opposition, to bug buildings, to subvert justice. When someone couldn’t pay their “tithe” they were “cut loose.” And then the blurring of the division of powers. And how the Executive Branch went after the opposition—the Post, individual reporters. (Woodward and Bernstein had to get a lawyer to mind their finances or they would have been in trouble with the IRS.) The shock of that. It was interesting to read that in an age when everything posted on Twitter will be preserved forever, when the NSA is bugging the world (and not just a few buildings) when the IRS does this sort of thing as a matter of course. And when none of it makes the front page news. We expect this sort of thing from our government now. It’s no longer shocking.

I finished the book in a wistful mood. Wistful for a time of real reporting—when you actually had to pound the pavement, talk to people, check out your facts, and –if you weren’t sure you didn’t have a story. And wistful for a time when we, as a nation, could still be shocked.
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on May 10, 2017
A delightful read for all those who love political conspiracies and dirty trick scandals. Watergate is the ultimate cover-up directly orchestrated by the highest office in America, the White House. Woodward and Bernstein provides detailed account on the timelines, characters, and the motivation. Sometimes you'll find yourselves re-reading parts of the book just trying to keep up with the number of people involved and keeping focus on everyone's intent. The book sheds light on the realities of political campaigns and the temptations to obstruct our democratic processes. I will definitely continue the journey by reading "The Final Days".
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on February 20, 2015
I lived in the Washington DC area when Watergate happened. I remember feeling how lucky I was to be here and to grab that Post every morning to see what new info was being reported. (I had relatives in Ohio who asked us to send them our Post's after we read them.) I grabbed this book as soon as it hit the bookshelves and read it several times. It just so happened that I worked at a building right across the street from the parking garage where Woodward met with Deep Throat. (The real excitement there happened when Robert Redford arrived to film those scenes with Hal Holbrook!) At some point the book disappeared from my shelves and I recently purchased the Kindle version and read it again. All the excitement of those times came right back! It's a terrific book and leaves you wanting to know even more.
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on November 18, 2015
I'd seen the movie years ago and was fascinated by the story. The biggest problem I had with the movie was that the story was so complex, with so many people involved, it was difficult to keep facts and people straight. I was in my early twenties during Watergate and while reading the book, I thought back to how impossible we thought something like the Watergate conspiracy was at the time. The thought that men at the highest level of power could have digressed to such devious and loathsome behavior was abhorrent and inconceivable. Other places, other countries, but not in the United States. I'm so glad I finally took the time to read the book.
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on July 13, 2017
I have never read a book where there was so much info absorb that it was difficult to keep up with all the facts and I lived through th8s time period and remember doing a paper but I learned so much and feel like there was something still missing. I have enjoyed this book and plan to read some more.
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