Janet Reno: Doing the Right Thing

Paul Anderson, Author
Paul Anderson, Author John Wiley & Sons $22.95 (328p) ISBN 978-0-471-01858-2
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Neither a deep character study nor a full analysis of Reno's career, this mainly admiring portrait of our plainspoken first female attorney general should satisfy those looking for a broad overview of her life and work. Anderson, Washington correspondent for the Miami Herald , traces Reno's background as the daughter of two Miami journalists, her ``straight arrow'' years as one of a few women at Harvard Law School and her introduction to law and politics when she returned to Florida. He describes Reno's triumphs and traumas as Dade County prosecutor, her appointment by President Clinton in the wake of two failed nominations and her performance as head of the Justice Department, including the Branch Davidian disaster in Waco, Tex., her criticism of TV violence and her limited role in formulating Clinton's crime bill. Though he avoids judgments for much of the book, Anderson adds mild criticism to praise in his epilogue. Photos not seen by PW. (June)
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