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America's first black president has just lost re-election. A new leader tries to pull the country out of a terrible recessiononly to face a devilish plot from inside his own party. David Frum's darkly comic satire PATRIOTS is not only a warning about the future of American politics. It is a scorching, intimate explanation of why the U.S. political system has so badly failed the American people over the years just past.PATRIOTS tells the story of Walter Schotzke, the aimless young heir to America's largest mustard fortune. Walter is sent by his tough-minded grandmother to work in the office of a distinguished U.S. Senator. She hopes her otherwise worthless only grandchild might find purpose, and even appreciation for his country, from political service. Perhaps the job will also help Walter overcome the tragic loss of both his parentsespecially that of his famous father, a genuine American hero, whose example Walter can't ever hope to live up to.In Washington, Walter quickly proves to be a better student of the dark side of politics than he ever was at all the boarding schools he was thrown out of. He gains his education from a farcical faculty of blowhard radio hosts, outraged protestors, think-tank experts-for-hire, shady lobbyists, internet impresiaros, and the sexy but sinister talking heads of the "Patriot News Network."Lunching and fundraising their luxurious way through economic depression and foreign war, the characters of PATRIOTS prosper by manipulating the fears and resentments of a country in crisis. Walter is used and abused - until, inadvertently and unexpectedly, he finds himself the unlikely hero of the angriest populist movement America has ever seen.It is not the experience Walter, or his grandmother, expected. Walter must make some tough decisions fastleading to the novel's surprising and hilarious conclusion."David Frum is someone who fearlessly speaks his mind, regardless of where the chips may fall, so its no surprise hes able to convey so much truth in his fiction." - Arianna Huffington

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    A how-it-really-works-in-Washington book. It is not quite rich enough to be a literary novel and not quite raucous enough to be an enjoyable satire, but it is amusing. If you ever doubted that everyone in Washington is a careerist and nothing else, here is proof.


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