The Daily Beast Best of the Best Book List

The Daily Beast

Every newspaper and magazine has released lists of their favorite books from the past year. The Daily Beast presents the ultimate best-of-the-year list by compiling the books that have appeared on the most lists (from The New York Times to the Chicago Tribune to The Economist) to come up with our definitive list of the best fiction and nonfiction this year. Read full list >

When Tim Russert mocked Bill Clinton — in song

Salon.comI really liked him [Branch] for staying close to his original point: Clinton was a man Branch was cynical about, an old friend turned politician whom Branch came to like more upon reacquaintance, a political operator who turned out to have more passion and integrity than many journalists or authors or activists or others who believe they’ve stayed “clean.” As someone who’s criticized Bill Clinton often but who always comes back to a position of (even grudging) respect, I found integrity in Branch’s full-throated defense of Clinton; it’s so rare and maybe long overdue. Read full blog article >

A Historian Puts His Money Where His Mouth Is
KPCC | Southern California Public Radio

Can you beat that moment? A few moments after I wrapped up my interview with historian Taylor Branch about his book ”The Clinton Tapes,” Molly Peterson and David Lazarus were making their pitch to listeners to pitch in to contribute to KPCC, and the award-winning writer opened his wallet right there in the studio and slapped down a double sawbuck — twenty bucks, and the newest KPCC member! Read full blog article >

Did Bubba’s Tapes Break the Law?
The Daily Beast, by Michael Smerconish

The Daily Beast

Bill Clinton never told Ken Starr about his secret Taylor Branch tapes, a source tells Michael Smerconish. Was that legal? Ex-prosecutors will dig through old records to figure that out. The lawyer in me had two recurring questions while reading all 668 pages of Taylor Branch’s new book, The Clinton Tapes: Wrestling History With the President. Read full blog article >

Our dumb media: Do we need to know more about Lewinsky?…there’s a wealth of insight here, and (my biggest passion) much that’s relevant to the travails of President Obama and the Democratic Party as they struggle to change the country while merely possessing both houses of Congress and the presidency. That sounds more cynical than I mean it to. Clinton faced a GOP that was, 15 years ago, already the party of “No,” already convinced that the only way back to power was thwarting a sitting Democratic president, and that’s an important insight. Read full blog article >

The Unguarded Bill Clinton

The Daily Beast

The Daily Beast

Former Clinton speechwriter Ted Widmer says there’s never been a presidential portrait as intimate as Taylor Branch’s new book—and we’ll never get a download like this about the second Bush administration. Read full blog article >

Reading “The Clinton Tapes,” thinking about Obama

…here’s what’s fascinating. First: Serendipitously, Branch started his private, taped talks with Clinton nine months into the Clinton presidency, in October, roughly where Obama is now, the better to focus you on the parallels and differences in their first year. I am not privy to the secrets of the Obama White House, but Branch brings the reader directly into the rooms where a red-eyed, exhausted Clinton sits talking late into the night about the challenges he faced in Mogadishu, Bosnia, Haiti and Iraq… Read full blog article >