Books

RODHAM by Curtis Sittenfeld, narrated by Carrington MacDuffie

Like AMERICAN WIFE, RODHAM filled me with alarm, not because of the story but because of the risks this author was taking. Whereas AMERICAN WIFE was a poke at George W. Bush, RODHAM accuses a former president of rape.

But once I was able to put these feelings aside, I loved this novel. Ms. Sittenfeld is a gifted mimic. Not only does she get Donald Trump down pat (with his peculiar use of the word beautiful), she also nails Bill Clinton. Indeed, Bill is one of the most compelling characters in this novel, taking up a great deal of psychic space with his outsize charisma. I was absolutely gripped by this novel whenever Bill was around.

Ms. Sittenfeld also caught Hillary’s emotional dimensions, her awkwardnesses, her shyness, her repressed emotions (especially as a young woman) as evidenced in her speech. Her way of thanking people, for example, was to say repeatedly “Thank you so much!” She almost never got more personal than that.

For those of us who were absolutely stunned & devastated by Hillary’s defeat, this book is much needed medicine, especially as it so clearly shows that one of the her greatest weaknesses was Bill. Five stars. #curtissittenfeld #rodham