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Sarah from Alaska: The Sudden Rise and Brutal Education of a New Conservative Superstar

Conroy, Scott; Walshe, Shushannah

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A year after a vice presidential campaign that remains as consequential as it was controversial, Sarah Palin is still the most dynamic yet polarizing Republican in America. Now Scott Conroy and Shushannah Walshe draw on their experiences as embedded reporters on Palin’s campaign, exclusive on-scene coverage of Palin’s post-election struggles in Alaska, and revealing interviews with former McCain/Palin staffers, top political minds, and Palin’s family, friends, and foes in Alaska to tell the remarkable behind-the-scenes story of her improbable rise—and its complicated aftermath. The result is a fair and fascinating portrait of Sarah Palin and of the American political process.

Sarah from Alaska illuminates both the talents that helped make Palin a superstar and the traits that became liabilities under the intense pressures of a divisive national campaign. It reveals in riveting detail how Palin’s vice presidential campaign became as dysfunctional as it was secretive, explores the circumstances behind her triumphs and baffling missteps, and provides new context for understanding her values, her political successes in Alaska, and her abrupt resignation from the governorship.

“It’s easy to turn Sarah Palin into a caricature of either a heroic everywoman or ridiculous dolt,” the authors say, “but the truth is that she is more complex than either her most passionate defenders or harshest critics give her credit for.” Palin remains ambitious and enormously popular among social conservatives, and her future will be intrinsically interwoven with that of the Republican Party as it struggles to redefine itself and recapture the necessary margin for national political victory in the next decade. That makes Sarah from Alaska essential reading for anyone interested in American politics.

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About the Author:

Scott Conroy has worked as a campaign reporter and is currently a digital journalist for CBS News. Shushannah Walshe was a reporter and producer at the Fox News Channel from August 2001 until the end of the 2008 presidential campaign. They each were embedded reporters who covered Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign and Sarah Palin’s historic vice presidential run for their respective networks. Conroy now lives in Chicago; Walshe in New York City.

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