Notes from the Trail: Presidential Politics from the Inside Out

Alexandra Kerry, Author Modern Times $27.95 (181p) ISBN 978-1-60529-980-8
In 2004, Alexandra Kerry, daughter of Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry, joined her father on the campaign trail. From the precincts of Iowa and New Hampshire to the Democratic National Convention to Election Day, Kerry rode buses, took red-eyes, gave speeches with her sister, greeted supporters, interviewed with reporters, and otherwise shared the grueling campaign life of her father. Kerry-sensitive, thoughtful, and observant-is a filmmaker and photographer, and clearly not a political animal; one of the book's unique charms is an intimate look at a political campaign through the eyes of an artist. Kerry captures the visceral emotion of campaigning, and the sense that electing a candidate is less a rational process than one driven by dreams, myths and feelings: ""I looked away when I saw grown men sobbing as they tried to give my father their Purple Heart or Bronze Star to carry for good luck."" Divided between a first-person narrative and a large collection of her photographs from the road, readers may be split over which half tells the better story. This unlikely, intimate account of the artist-as-field campaigner should please those looking for a different perspective on the Presidential contest. 110 color photos.
Reviewed on: 08/04/2008
Release date: 08/01/2008
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