Book Review – Boomsday by Christopher Buckley
This cynical farce of American politics includes a cast of disreputable characters. There are several ambitious politicians, a self-appointed spokeswoman for her generation on a crusade against Social Security (which she seems to have only a superficial understanding of), a fundamentalist Baptist minister (crusading against just about everything), and a slimy PR executive (who may be the most rational of the bunch). The people in this book are they type you would be best off avoiding, if possible, insofar as all, despite their differences, share one characteristic — that of negotiable integrity.
The lack of an admirable protagonist, however, does not prevent the book from being likable. It’s fun in a rather juvenile way, a low comedy in which the characters continually make and break agreements, deceive, lie, manipulate, betray and backstab one another. The characters are not thoroughly detestable, and we can sympathize at times, but mostly we laugh at their misfortune because, after all, they’re really not all that likable. What is amazing is that any of them ever buy the BS the others are trying to sell to them. They should know better.
I won’t say this is a great book, but insofar as my overall opinion of politics and politicians tends toward the cynical side, I got a laugh or two out of it. In my more rational moments, I doubt Washington insiders are as lacking in integrity and good judgment as the characters in this book, but sometimes I have to wonder.