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Now, Let Me Tell You What I Really Think Audible – Abridged

3.6 out of 5 stars 62 customer reviews

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By Carl A. Redman on March 11, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Why should I care what Chris Matthews' really thinks? The purpose of this one is to tell people how he feels about certain issues, to show people whether he is a conservative or a liberal. But I found that although the book was interesting at times, it lacked the true opinions of Matthews' on huge issues and focused more on his path to his current status instead. Pages at a time were spent on Matthews' opinion on political leaders like Nixon, Kennedy, and Reagan. True, Matthews really did say what he thought of these men, but who cares? I wanted to hear the dirt -- the real issues that affect Americans' daily lives like Social Security, taxes, etc. Matthews oftentimes appears as a fence rider, especially in his commentary on current politicos like Clinton, Bush, and Gore.
Published soon after the attacks on the World Trade Center, it often seemed that Matthews rushed this book to the presses with a few obvious grammatical errors that editors missed. In short, this book seems like a weak attempt to make a buck for Matthews. The book is listed by publishers as 256 pages, but it only goes to page 215, and the first chapter doesn't start until page 19! Additionally, a title page between each chapter knocks an another 20 pages off the book. In the end, the actual 175-page (or less) book lacks substance and appears more like fluff.
My favorite two parts of the book actually were quotes/commentary of other men.
1) "All men dream; but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find that it was vanity; but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dream with open eyes, to make it possible. This I did." T.E.
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Format: Hardcover
You do not have to read certain books to be enlightened or taught. You don't need to be lectured especially about our USA politics to be able to figure it out. But sometimes we need to be brought to the general awareness of certain subjects which allows us to expand on our thoughts and knowledge, and that is what this book does. You can go on, on your own and say, now this is what I really think. I don't know if that is what Chris Matthews had in mind, but its all to obvious to me. Read a book that will do both, inform and cause thinking, Read Karl Maddox.
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Format: Hardcover
I must confess at the start that it is hard for me to be objective about Chris Matthews. I have regularly watched his CNBC show HARDBALL for over three years. In this open letter to his fans, we learn a little more about how his strong opinions were formed and why it seems he enjoys what he does so much. Being part autobiography and part political opinion, the book is a quick read. Containing opinions on JFK, Nixon, Reagan, and his former bosses, Jimmy Carter and Tip O'Neill, to name a few, much of what Chris has to say will sound familiar to his fans. Some of it, especially his opinions on Nixon, will surprise us. For those who already know Chris, this book will be a pleasure to read. For those who don't, it will provide a glimpse of what his show is like: fast paced and refreshingly honest.
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Format: Hardcover
This short, slender book is big on potential but lacks real bite. Matthews, a charming and engaging man, hosts a good show. "Really think", however, is less than two hundred pages (in a tiny book, about 275 words per page) of vignettes about people and their lives followed by Matthews' customary, "Now, let me tell you what I really think."
He uses lines from popular movies, like "Maltese Falcon" and "The Wild Bunch". He remembers where he was when JFK and RFK were shot. He shows that he is a real boomer. He adopts his father's Republican admiration of Eisenhower, becomes enthralled by JFK's Catholicism and magnetic personality, dips his toe in the Goldwater pool (along with Hillary Clinton, he explains), joins the Peace Corps, comes back to Washington and eventually becomes an assistant to liberal congressman (capped off with Tip O'Neill), all before he launches his media career. I'm not sure that this makes him the "journalist" he describes himself to be, more likely he relishes the role of "entertainment", a charge he gladly accepts.
His thoughts on family, on knocking on doors (to get a seat at the table), and Jesuit education are most interesting and saved for last. But I was disappointed. After about two hours of reading, "Really think" ended and came up short.
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Format: Hardcover
I read this book on a return flight to the UK from Florida. I watched Hardball while on vacation there and enjoyed Matthews' direct style. He advertised the book at the end of his show so I thought I'd give it a try. It was a great disappointment and smacks of a quickly assembled cut and paste job. The best bits are near the beginning where Matthews describes America's love of freedom and its 'cowboy soul'. I also felt he was good on George W. Bush and Al Gore and later on Ronald Reagan. The rest was deeply unoriginal - too much on his mom and dad, too much on Kennedy and his 1960's youth (this is such a boring subject to those of us under 40)and amazingly for a brit such as I he praises Churchill (born into one of England's most aristocratic families) to the heavens while dismissing the UK as being class conscious and knocking our National Health Service (whose development from 1951-1955 Churchill oversaw). Dont get me wrong, Churchill's achievement during world war II was immense, but his overview of Churchill's career was so trite and simplistic it made me sceptical about the author's real understanding of history. As a great admirer of the USA, the book only confirmed my beliefs about the geographical incuriosity of Americans. Okay, so Matthews spent two years in Africa with the peace corps and toured Eastern Europe after the fall of the Berlin Wall, but he observes these places only in the reflected glory of America and no real respect for alternative worldviews. So Chris, here's what I really think - America remains the hope of the freedom loving world, just show a little more respect for us and we'll love you all the more. And if you really want a British political giant who would meet your Democratic and Republican sensibilities, look to Ernest Bevin who was born into real poverty, became one of the world's most powerful trade union leaders but whose anti-communism led him to be instrumental in the creation of NATO.
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