WORTH THE FIGHTING FOR: A Memoir
McCain, with help from his administrative assistant Salter, picks up where the bestselling Faith of My Fathers left off, after his release from a North Vietnamese POW prison. After two decades in Congress, he has plenty of stories to tell, beginning with his first experiences on Capitol Hill as a navy liaison to the Senate, where he became friends with men like Henry "Scoop" Jackson and John Tower. (The latter friendship plays a crucial role in McCain's account of the battle over Tower's 1989 nomination for defense secretary.) He revisits the "Keating Five" affair that nearly wrecked his career in the early '90s, pointedly observing how the investigating Senate committee left him dangling for political reasons long after he'd been cleared of wrongdoing. There's much less on his 2000 presidential campaign than one might expect; a single chapter lingers on a self-lacerating analysis of how he lost the South Carolina primary. (He admits, "I doubt I shall have reason or opportunity to try again" for the White House, and may even consider retiring from the Senate.) Self-criticism is a recurring motif, as the senator berates himself for speaking recklessly or letting his temper get the best of him. He nevertheless takes pride in his status as a maverick and pays tribute to inspirational figures like Theodore Roosevelt, Ted Williams and Robert Jordan, the fictional protagonist of Hemingway's For Whom the Bell Tolls. Luckily for McCain, he's such an engaging storyteller most readers will readily accept these digressions from his own remarkable history. (Sept. 24)
Forecast:Though McCain is less in the national eye now, the respect he's earned should mean bestseller status again for him.
Release date: 09/01/2002