The Contender: Andrew Cuomo, A Biography

Michael Shnayerson. Twelve, $30 (544p) ISBN 978-1455521-99-9
The hook of this biography from Shnayerson (Coal River)--that New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is still a legitimate presidential prospect--may have been overtaken by events: the January 2015 arrest of Sheldon Silver reinforced the state's image as a cesspool of corruption, despite Cuomo's pledge to clean up Albany. The governor is certainly a fascinating figure, but even readers with a negative view of him are likely to have qualms about the author's persistent use of anonymous sources. Shnayerson, belatedly, explains that many of the people he spoke with were afraid of getting on Cuomo's bad side, but does not provide any basis to credit their accounts or indicate what efforts he took to corroborate them. This is a serious failing, as the author gives space to some significant innuendos, including speculation that Cuomo may have tipped off investigators to his predecessor's use of prostitutes, the scandal that led to Eliot Spitzer's resignation and set the stage for Cuomo's 2010 election. There's enough that's well-documented about Cuomo, both good and bad, to make resorting to unsubstantiated reports unnecessary, and this biography, intended to be definitive, is not. Agent: Esther Newberg, ICM. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 03/30/2015
Release date: 03/31/2015
Genre: Nonfiction
Compact Disc - 978-1-4789-8439-9
Compact Disc - 978-1-61969-260-2
Open Ebook - 384 pages - 978-1-4555-2200-2
Paperback - 384 pages - 978-1-4555-2198-2
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