This Town - Mark Leibovich

This Town

By Mark Leibovich

  • Release Date: 2013-07-16
  • Genre: Politics & Current Events
Score: 4
From 334 Ratings


The #1 New York Times and Washington Post bestseller

Tim Russert is dead.
But the room was alive.
Big Ticket Washington Funerals can make such great networking opportunities. Power mourners keep stampeding down the red carpets of the Kennedy Center, handing out business cards, touching base. And there is no time to waste in a gold rush, even (or especially) at a solemn tribal event like this.

Washington—This Town—might be loathed from every corner of the nation, yet these are fun and busy days at this nexus of big politics, big money, big media, and big vanity. There are no Democrats and Republicans anymore in the nation’s capital, just millionaires. That is the grubby secret of the place in the twenty-first century. You will always have lunch in This Town again. No matter how many elections you lose, apologies you make, or scandals you endure.

In This Town, Mark Leibovich, chief national correspondent for The New York Times Magazine, presents a blistering, stunning—and often hysterically funny—examination of our ruling class’s incestuous “media industrial complex.” Through his eyes, we discover how the funeral for a beloved newsman becomes the social event of the year. How political reporters are fetishized for their ability to get their names into the predawn e-mail sent out by the city’s most powerful and puzzled-over journalist. How a disgraced Hill aide can overcome ignominy and maybe emerge with a more potent “brand” than many elected members of Congress. And how an administration bent on “changing Washington” can be sucked into the ways of This Town with the same ease with which Tea Party insurgents can, once elected, settle into it like a warm bath.

Outrageous, fascinating, and destined to win Leibovich a whole host of, er, new friends, This Town is must reading, whether you’re inside the Beltway—or just trying to get there.


  • This Town

    By Ufdyjde
    To me, the lessons of this book are not ‘throw the bums out,’ or ‘they’re all awful,’ but how to interpret the news that the rest of us get. It helped me understand positioning, messaging, and why some policies are implemented and others are not. Washington is full of extremely bright people (and a smattering of elected officials who are amazingly dumb). If the rest of us were running the country, we’d see the same egos and self-interest, but the country would run even worse than it does now.
  • Sad but True

    By lilbeeche
    Well written book showing that people at the highest levels of power are sad examples of greed, small minds and selfish.
  • This Town

    By Saputza
    I wish the entire American populous would read this book along with another book titled, "Throw Them All Out." Perhaps then we would throw them all out. Our government, for the most part, makes a mockery of Democracy, as well as the people it feigns deep concern for. If you are disgusted with the government, read this and get exponentially more disgusted. Great read.
  • This Town

    By Sing Pilot
    What a complete waste of time! This book reminds me of when I slogged my way through Stephan King's "Tommyknockers" waiting for it to get good, only to discover on the last page that it was never going to get good. I really don't know who would care about the self absorbed media in this country. There are no surprises or insights in this book. The author spends pages writing about Darrell Issa's press secretary who no one cares about. BORING! The "inside baseball" stuff is just depressing and boring. I could not care less about all these press types and lobbying apparatchiks. He has many references to Joe Scarborough. Does anyone watch or care about Joe? Talk about living in a bubble! Please don't waste your money. I wish I could get my money back, but that is nothing compared to the time I wasted reading this book.
  • What a Disappointment

    By Dallasite2
    I guess you have to be a "beltway" insider to appreciate this book. Otherwise it is truly a waste of your money. Charlie Rose and all the other reviews notwithstanding, it's a waste of time and money.
  • This Town

    By BJ Sylvester
    Funny yet sad to see that "This Towns" citizens are are superficial as we all suspected. Mark's writing style was engaging and witty and many times I found myself smiling as I imagined being at one of the parties described in the book and taking it all in. Glad I read This Town. Paul Touhey
  • 5 stars + 1 star = 3

    By Hayward777
    As an outsider reading an insider's book it alternated between interesting and boring. It was not a fluid narrative but a jagged linking of assorted anecdotes, keen insight, gossip, and humor. Not bad but I expected more.
  • Try looking into the mirror

    By Bessie/Murray
    A pathetic book shameless hypercritical blather. Pages of feigned revelations of how narcissistic Washington is when this book is a pane to that culture. After 3 chapters I put down is vacuous self- important crap. This guy should roast in hell with the sycophants and scum he writes about who lead and influence this country and made it into a celebrity burlesque show. Total crap
  • Great Fun!

    By bleedingh
    I have been a DC junkie for over 40 years. I've been through all the phases from worshipful to complete cynic. This book made me laugh out loud. Its writing is of course informational but the use of sarcasm in just the right dose is terrific. The book's truth is(sadly) undeniable but I was better about to absorb the sober lesson of the book due to the author's talent for sharing the truth about the players in DC with such humor. Loved it. Will be giving it to others!
  • This Town

    By Dolbiedog
    Truly amazing (maybe disgusting) the amount of money surrounding our political leaders in Washington. It proves that money can't buy good government. It just enriches those those who claim to be in public service.