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Domestic Affairs: A Novel Hardcover – July 31, 2012

3.8 out of 5 stars 34 customer reviews

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The Underground Railroad
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Editorial Reviews

Review

Terry McAuliffe, former Chair, Democratic National Committee
“Bridget Siegel is a true political campaign insider and she has seen it ALL!   Her novel, Domestic Affairs, is a fun, provocative read and offers a rare glimpse into what really goes on behind the scenes of political campaigns -- the good, the bad and everything in between."

About the Author

Bridget Siegel worked on numerous political campaigns including Kerry-Edwards, Obama-Biden, Hilary Clinton, and Andrew Cuomo. She graduated from Georgetown University and is now a professional actor and writer. She lives in New York City.
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The latest book club pick from Oprah
"The Underground Railroad" by Colson Whitehead is a magnificent novel chronicling a young slave's adventures as she makes a desperate bid for freedom in the antebellum South. See more

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Weinstein Books (July 31, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1602861641
  • ISBN-13: 978-1602861640
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6.1 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,837,699 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I was looking for a light read and this seemed to fit the bill. The author, however, has no innate feel for language and the book is filled with errors. Already on page 3 we have "his face was flushed white." (Does she really not know what "flush" means?) Other random examples, "stirring her coffee with her well-manicured, diamond covered hand." (Why not use a spoon?) "Another politician appropriately sat at the other "climber" table." (was seated, appropriately, at the other . . .) "He cut off her embarrassing loss of words." (How do you cut off something that doesn't exist?) There are so many non-sequitors, misplaced and misused words, so much bad grammar (not to mention a predictable and boring story) that I am abandoning the book.

All writers need editors, proof-readers, readers with a fresh eye. This author has lists of people who supposedly fulfilled these roles. Either she ignored their advice or they did piss-poor jobs.
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Format: Hardcover
DOMESTIC AFFAIRS is written by Bridget Siegel, who worked for the Edwards and Obama campaigns. The novel is a thinly disguised retelling of Edwards' run for the Presidency, with the protagonist, Olivia Greenley, being the youngest head of fund raising in a presidential race ever. She falls for the Georgian governor, Landon Taylor, who is running for President, articulating many of the things true believing Democrats believe in passionately. He pursues Olivia with equal passion. Yet the characters are poorly developed and you never get a sense of any of them, even Olivia, a workaholic who responds to Taylor like one imagines Monica Lewinsky responded to Bill Clinton--a complete schoolgirl fantasist.

On the plus side, you get lots of inside lingo as to how campaigns are funded and detailed descriptions of the richest fundraisers and their ways. The publisher is Weinstein Books (yes, Harvey Weinstein) and a character that seems based on him is one of the fund-raisers. It's kind of fun to try and figure out which parts are based on "real-life" (if politics can be said to be real-life): there's a Bernie Madoff character and when Olivia finally walks out, a blonde with a videotape machine named Brianna is on board the campaign plane, documenting the campaign. Not very subtle foreshadowing, that.

In the Acknowledgments, Ms. Siegel apologizes for her cynical view of politicians and lists the good ones she has worked with, among them Hillary Clinton, Mario Cuomo, and Terry McAuliffe (who provides a blurb for the book)...but not Edwards nor Obama. Interesting...

This is beach trash for the politically minded. I can't recommend it, despite it being compulsive reading. You're left feeling like you spent way too much time supporting the wrong candidate when there are far more worthwhile ones to engage.
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Format: Hardcover
This is a foolish little novel, quite a surprise from the author's previous efforts. This is in poor form, the dialogue between characters should be enlightening, instead it drags the reader down to the basic core: If a politician is involved, truth takes a long coffee break. Frankly, I became thoroughly annoyed with all the "_____ opened her eyes wide. How many times must that phrase be repeated? Seemed like every time the going became even the slightest bit difficult, the heroine "opens her eyes wide" Wow! She must have really tired eye muscles, all that wide opening and such.
For a novel to engage a reader, the reader must care for fhe characters, but those very same characters are clearly unlikable. The governor is out for what he can get, in every situation. It's fairly easy to dislike him. The problem is finding any way to like him. Impossible. He's a predator, a shark, a mug- running for president of the US. POTUS. However, he is a pol, so his behavior is expected. Cat's away, mousie will play. He is a user who takes every advantage he can, right, wrong or indifferent. You can't like him, reality aside, that makes him a perfect politician.
As for Olivia, what a fool. All caught up in her job as the youngest campaign fund manager, she also has the childish dream that "Her Guy" can actually part the seas and cause the sun to explode. In other words, the girl is stupid. Nothing to like there, either.
Of course, she falls for the gov., and he uses her for his own purposes. Because she is stupid....she allows it, even craves it. Again, unlikable.

The writing style itself was nothing special. I am a very quick reader, and when I really enjoy a book, I can stay with it all day, so I can finish.
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Format: Kindle Edition
If you liked watching The West Wing this novel will strike a sympathetic chord. We see enthusiastic young volunteers working for the ideal candidate who will make the country a better place. The hectic scheduling,and juggling of donors'egos while also keeping an eye on the polls and numbers leaves very little time for for these idealists to have much of a private life. The novel develops the political campaign in parallel with the personal campaign of the sexual predator politician.(Alas, he is no Josiah Bartlet) The cunning of this predator as he sets his victim up is superbly depicted . This book should be required reading for all would-be interns
mlr
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