I had no idea when I traveled to Washington, D.C. with Agape's choir to sing at various inaugural balls to celebrate our very first black president that twelve years later, we'd be celebrating our very first black vice-president — and that I would have a role in honoring her in a very special way.
I agented this biography by veteran California political journalist Dan Morain which made Fortune's round-up of the ten best books published in January 2021 and Town & Country's list of must-read books of winter 2021.
Politico says Kamala's Way is "an essential road map to understand the life and groundbreaking political journey of the former California prosecutor." According to USA Today, it's "meticulously reported." Kirkus deems it "an admiring, yet balanced, biography ... A brisk, well-informed narrative of political ascendancy." The Wall Street Journal notes that the biography is "detailed and dutiful," adding "Ms. Harris—as is her prerogative—omitted much detail from her own autobiography. Mr. Morain has filled in many of those blanks." "This story about how she ran the gantlet of American politics will leave readers admiring Harris for how she has not only survived but thrived," says The Washington Post.
Perhaps The Miami Times sums it up best: "The author also shares stories of the Harris that exists when the cameras are gone, and does it in a way that's not sensational or tabloid-ish. Instead, it's thorough, honest and a quick-to-read education about our new second in command, so if you think you don't know enough about her, add it to your must-read pile, because Kamala's Way is a great next step."
And I just love this question from an Los Angeles Times Q & A with Dan because I observed his evolution up-close while working with him.
Were there any moments in researching the book that caused you to reassess your opinion of Harris?
When I was at the Sacramento Bee, from 2010 to 2018, is really when I wrote most about Harris. If you go back and read the columns that I wrote and editorials that I generally took the lead in writing about the attorney general’s office, you’ll see that they’re pretty critical. And one of the things that I wrote, and others wrote, was that she was overly cautious.
I’m not sure that’s really true. I think what she does is she picks her battles. There are cases, as attorney general, where she had no choice. She had to defend the state. But in many, many instances, I think she chose not to engage in fights that she viewed as being other people’s fights.
Finally, from the Times of India, Kamala's mother Shyamala's native country, comes this observation: "Morain paints a vivid picture of her family, values and priorities, as well as the missteps, risks and bold moves she's made on her way to the top."
Happy Inauguration Day!
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