7 Political Novels That Aren’t Stupid (Like Politicians)
All The King’s Men is said by many critics to be the greatest political novel of all time.
I don’t know about that, but it is a really freakin’ good book. And since I thought I hadn’t tackled that many true political novels as part of reading the Time list, I started wondering what else is out there.
Here’s what I found–and well, it turns out, I have read a few political novels:
1984: Orwell’s classic was my book #11 from the list, and it’s currently in my top 10. Loved this novel. This is big brother, big government, and crappy politicians at their worst. Interestingly, it is currently a best-seller on Amazon after a huge spike in sales brought on by current news here in the U.S.–like the NSA scandal and the killer drones.
Lincoln: I would love to read Lincoln by Gore Vidal, but I never have. I’m not crazy about historical fiction, and it’s historical fiction. But by all accounts, it’s good historical fiction.
The Manchurian Candidate: Fascinating novel by Richard Condon. An American POW is brainwashed by the Chinese government and then reprogrammed to go home and kill the American president. Wow! What a great story setup.
Catch 22: Bureaucracy and politics go hand in hand. And Catch 22 by Joseph Heller is, in my opinion, one of the best satirical novels ever–it’s all about war, politics and bureaucracy. I just love Yossarian. Great character.
Atlas Shrugged: Read and adored by Tea Partiers everywhere, Atlas Shrugged is Ayn Rand’s classic. A Library of Congress survey called it the second most influential book for Americans. I don’t get the hype, but I haven’t read it either.
American Hero: This novel by Larry Beinhart was the basis for the movie Wag The Dog. It’s a satirical novel that basically says, “What if a president determined to get re-elected teamed up with a famous movie director to basically create a made-for-TV war?”
Animal Farm: Another Orwell classic novel. No, it’s not about barnyard animals. It’s about Joseph Stalin and leadership gone mad.
What’s your take on political novels? Any favorites?