... lively, encyclopedic ... serves as a 900-page case study of what the sociologist Tina Fetner refers to as the 'symbiotic' relationship between conservatives and queer activists. The religious right told us we couldn’t have marriage, so we decided we needed it ... Issenberg doesn’t shy away from examining the role of race in electoral politics, but we don’t learn why, exactly, queer Black activists were such a rarity in the upper echelons of the marriage fight ... In the era of de-Trumpification, the L.G.B.T.Q. community has the opportunity to consider what it can and must accomplish now that marriage equality has granted tax and social privileges only to those able and willing to join that institution. Meanwhile, Issenberg leaves us with a valuable lesson: We must pick our battles wisely, for they dictate not just our rights, but also the limits of our political imagination.
The legal analysis is targeted toward general readers, and the author deftly weaves the legislative and legal together to create a full picture for readers ... Although chapters tend to meander, he focuses on personalities and motivations that inflate his already detailed analysis of Supreme Court cases and other political movements in support of equality ... A comprehensive work of civil rights history that is sure to interest political and legal enthusiasts.
... exhaustive, detailed, and authoritative ... Issenberg keeps the story moving, providing context and balanced coverage ... Issenberg’s nuanced and insightful reporting brings clarity to this important milestone.
... comprehensive ... Issenberg lucidly delineates this multifaceted and complex topic and movingly profiles key players including Ninia Baehr and Genora Dancel, original litigants in the Hawaii case. The magnitude of detail slows the proceedings somewhat, but even readers well-versed in the subject will learn something new. The result is a definitive portrait of a key victory in the battle for LGBTQ rights.
... exceptionally comprehensive but overlong and inefficiently organized ... Issenberg’s encyclopedic narrative, though written well on the sentence level, has an inelegant structure that reveals an author unable or unwilling to necessarily condense the narrative (at least 200 pages could have been cut). He also includes too many unedifying details ... Future journalists or historians will likely offer more efficient histories, but Issenberg’s research makes the book a vital source for bookstores, libraries, and LGBTQ studies completists ... An important story of a great civil rights battle told in exhaustive detail.