Abedin attempts to answer some of these questions, with varying degrees of success. One senses at times that when she falters, she lacks insight rather than sincerity, which is itself a kind of honest answer: Abedin may be one of the most politically astute and well-traveled women in the world, but she portrays herself as far from worldly, at least in affairs of the heart ... It’s clear from the outset that this book is not a sidekick’s tale, but the story of a person of substance — someone determined to tell her own story, with her name pronounced correctly, for once ... I made it a dozen pages into her first two years working at the White House, started to grasp just how much ground Abedin intended to cover over the course of this 500-page book — and then did what perhaps you are tempted to do right now as you read this review: I skipped ahead to the more dramatic events of her personal life ... I had the sense that in the sections about Clinton, the book was serving as a kind of body woman — that Abedin could not help functioning, even in her own memoir, as someone habitually burnishing Clinton’s image for posterity...she is still messaging, rather than writing with the kind of voice that brings a reader close to history ... Abedin herself does not fully come to life on the page until she actually meets Weiner — which is when the reader also better appreciates how much her upbringing as a faithful Muslim distinguished her in the circles in which she moved ... The catalog of her Job-like suffering — the shame to which she was subject for actions other than her own — is at times excruciating to read; but it is as if in uttering those episodes aloud, she ensures that they do not own her. Huma still fascinates, not because of any lurid details she exposes but because her story serves as a parable, a blinking billboard of a reminder that no one is exempt from suffering. She is far from psychologically minded; but there is, somehow, something comforting in her refusal to find bright sides of the story or purport to share great wisdom as someone who is still standing despite it all. The only way out, she seems to say, was through, which is perhaps not original, but has the benefit of being true ... The book does sometimes suffer from Abedin’s apparent feeling that she cannot afford to seem less than saintly toward others ... an unburdening, an apology and an attempt at restitution. For all its darkness, it is also a gesture of gratitude.
[Abedin's] admiration for the woman she's worked for more than 20 years, and who reportedly views Abedin as a second daughter, is on full display ... While most people will be interested in the politics or the scandals, it's the story of her parents — their family's history — that sheds the most light on who Abedin is ... Her faith is on full display in this book. It makes it a little disappointing, though, that she doesn't address the islamophobia that has been a concern for many Muslim-Americans head on until pretty late in the book ... For someone who has had to say 'No' to some powerful people and who is at her core a private person, she has no trouble putting limits to how much she shares in this memoir.
The memoir is candid yet soaked in denial, a cautionary tale of orthodox Good Girlism ... Many of the salacious details in the book will be familiar to anyone who saw the uncomfortable 2016 documentary Weiner. You’ll see Abedin once again flattened by her penchant for appeasement and denial. Both/And is a portrait of codependency. Abedin might have called the memoir The Good Wife, except it was already taken ... Over the course of this propulsive narrative (the prose is crisp, though never remarkable, like far too many political memoirs), Abedin humbly recalls details of a life that is also charmed.