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Showing 1-10 of 89 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 168 reviews
on May 3, 2015
Though the book has 1 1988 copyright date, the information is essentially timeless. It could have been written as a weekend conference hosting Prince Machiavelli, King Solomon, Sun Tzu and Dale Carnegie as its collective writing staff. The only facet that establishes a time frame is its real-life cast of characters, from Wendell Wilke and LBJ to Edmund Muskie and Ronald Reagan. Chris Matthews picks no favorites as he shows the merits and faults of many players quite candidly. His endless series of anecdotes are divided into chapters with unique central points which are wisely matched with exponents who mastered those techniques. Matthews takes many of the stories from firsthand experience as an operative with the respective master as he was employed in a variety of ways with many of the highlighted pols over a lengthy career in Washington.

As the author points out, virtually all of the techniques, systems and characteristics are universal and could be used in sports, business, for-profit and non-profit environments as well as high-level politics. It is a book that is fun to read and does not bogged down with details or tedious issues of the day, choosing to focus more on the actions and reactions of the proponents and antagonists as they fought for their cause de jour. It's a primer for PoliSci 101, not too heavy but not kindergarten either. Neither a Pulitzer candidate or a coffee table tome, it will keep your interest especially as you relate the chapter's characters with the chapter's title.
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on February 28, 2015
Excellent book. Author provides insight into the world of politics illustrated by numerous anecdotes and examples. Some of the most practical takeaways include the value of "retail politics", the importance of checking your own ego and focusing on the ego of those you wish to influence, and why getting someone to do you a favor helps cement their future support. Last part of the book addresses a number of keys to political success.

Overall a very good book with practical application in politics, buisness, or daily life. Highly recommend this book.
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on March 25, 2016
I had to read this for a class but was pleasantly surprised by the read. I had expected it to be fairly boring being a class assigned book; however, it was actually fairly interesting. Although I would not have picked this out for myself, anyone interested in politics would probably like it.
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on June 19, 2013
I'm 14, and I already love the game of politics - but I don't always love reading. When my dad got me this book, I left it on the bookshelf as a kind gesture. Recently, I decided to open it up, and I sped through it in 3 days. It was incredible, engaging, and, most importantly, extremely important and helpful for anyone who will enter the game of politics.

Matthews may be annoying on TV, but he is an absolute political genius who outlines exactly how to confront ever situation you'll come across in politics.

I highly recommend this book.
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on July 17, 2017
Required by 12th grade AP Government class. My husband read it before our two read it and he said it is an excellent book.
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on July 18, 2013
This is an amazing book; Matthews specifically points out that Politics is a game and can not be played by everyone. There are particular rules that have be taken into consideration during the game, otherwise one would fail miserably. I loved the author's added humor in some parts of the book because it was a way to connect to the common people who hardly knows about anything going on in the present-day American politics. The only thing I disliked about the book was that some areas were confusing and Matthews failed to explicitly explain them. Overall, Hardball is great and informative!
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on June 28, 2015
It's a good book, even if you're not into politics. It teaches not only about how politics is played, but also useful life lessons. I recommend this to young adults. You won't regret it.
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on December 29, 2013
Chris Matthews should really consider revising and updating this book. I read it myself and used (some of) it with my students in a government class. It has consistent lessons about the importance of politics and how they work - considering how lousy a job our current Congress is doing perhaps we shoudld get a copy for each of them - it couldn't hurt!
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on May 10, 2015
Great book. Chris Mathews is witty, clever and entertaining. All of his work is informative,
and scholarly. It is too bad he gets extreme and makes unfair comments about Republicans.
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on July 15, 2016
Some interesting stories and incites but nothing that jumps out at you as being an outstanding revelation. Was written in the 90's so it doesn't cover today's governmental issues.
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