PositiveThe Los Angeles Review of BooksIt is one of the most important documents in the history of the American presidency. It is breathtaking in its detail, spread over 448 pages with 2,381 footnotes. It is also highly readable for layperson and lawyer alike. Indeed, portions read like a vivid political thriller ... The report includes the most concise explanation available to the public of how the Russians interfered in the 2016 election ... It deserves to be read by everyone who cares about the United States and the future of our democratic institutions ... Unfortunately, although worth reading, the commentaries in both publications are rather short and superficial, and large portions appear to have been written prior to the release of the report [by Skyhorse and Scribner] ... The need for \'instant\' print publication of reports like this no longer exists. But the need for in-depth analysis remains. It would have been a greater public service had the commentators been given more time to dig deeper into the report and produce more comprehensive analyses. Perhaps others will undertake this important task.
James B Comey
MixedThe Los Angeles Review of BooksBy and large, pundits and book reviewers have overlooked Comey’s most explosive revelations involving illegal conduct in the White House ... what is really important about his book is that we have a senior official in the Bush administration documenting how the government conducted illegal surveillance on US citizens and engaged in illegal torture (including waterboarding of detainees) in various \'black sites\' around the world ... Comey frames his entire book as a plea for \'ethical leadership\' based on the values of \'truth, integrity, and respect for others,\' without which the justice system begins to decay. Yet he never addresses why neither he nor anyone else has ever used their authority to hold those who engaged in illegal surveillance and torture fully accountable ... Of course, A Higher Loyalty is best known for Comey’s famous confrontations with President Trump ... Comey describes these incidents in an engaging and cinematic style. His reporting is filled with vivid details and direct quotes attributed to both Trump and himself which make these accounts convincing and credible. But all the attention devoted to these shiny objects, should not obscure the rest of Comey’s book. Unintentionally, A Higher Loyalty teaches more about \'ethical leadership\' by studying not what Comey has done in his career but by what he has failed to do. Not only has our government failed to hold any officials accountable for torture and illegal surveillance, but those very officials have been rewarded with high positions, book deals, prominent speaking tours, and, most recently, the May 17 confirmation of Gina Haspel as director of the CIA.
RaveThe Los Angeles Review of Books...a rare look at the grueling toll a national presidential election campaign can take on the journalists whose job it is to cover the daily — sometimes hourly — developments reported in our voracious 24-hour news cycle … Tur has written a very personal, funny, and candid memoir that not only reveals a lot about a courageous TV reporter, but also helps us better understand how Trump got elected … Tur structures her book with a series of fast-paced alternating chapters set in various campaign events and encounters juxtaposed with hour-by-hour accounts of election night. The format is slightly jarring at first, but it quickly begins to make sense as the book takes on a cinematic quality, combining entertaining flashbacks with the hours leading to the foreboding climax we all know is coming.
Melvin I. Urofsky
PositiveLos Angeles Review of BooksUrofsky has made a significant contribution to our understanding of the Supreme Court and the Constitution.