January 23, 2007, - 11:31 am
By Debbie Schlussel
Earlier this month, USA Today published a list of the major books and novels coming out for the first third of 2007. I wrote about it and made my comments about several of the books, based on USA Today’s summary of what they were about. Admittedly, I had read none of these books at the time (they weren’t out yet).
I’ve since heard from those behind two of the books.
One of those people is ABC News correspondent Martha Raddatz, whose book–”The Long Road Home“–was among those I ripped. Based on the title and USA Today’s description, it sounded like the book was yet another anti-war tome on Iraq.
Martha wrote me to say that USA Today got it wrong and that her book is very supportive of the troops. After reading Martha’s e-mails (which she has allowed me to post), I think that I was wrong in my commentary on her upcoming book, and I’ve told Martha I look forward to reviewing her book. I’m glad to hear, based on her e-mails, that her book is not yet another “down-on-us-being-in-Iraq” book. If that’s the case, it’s refreshing, and I owe her an apology. We’ll see when I review it, but it sounds like it will be a great book:
— “Raddatz, Martha J” wrote:
Subject: Book lists…
Date: Mon, 22 Jan 2007 18:43:28 -0500
From: “Raddatz, Martha J”
I saw your web entry about USA Today’s “notable” books for 2007.
“The Long Road Home,” by Martha Raddatz (Putnam). ABC News correspondent’s experiences covering the war in Iraq. [DS: USA Today's description]
Could she come up with a more trite title?! Yet another anti-War “expose” that’ll put you to sleep . . . by yet another Mainstream Media “news” “correspondent.” YAAAAAWN. Next! [DS: My commentary]
Despite what USA Today wrote, I wanted you to know that the book is not about me! (or it probably would be a yawn!)‚Ä¶.nor is it an anti-war expose. It is about a battalion of incredibly brave US soldiers, and the families who support them stateside. I could certainly take the heat if you had criticism for me—but these soldiers and their families are true heroes.
In a later e-mail, Martha Raddatz added this:
These soldiers are just incredible and I am so proud to tell their story. PS—i never stay in the green zone when I am in iraq! I am always with the troops.
Background on Martha Raddatz from the Media Research Center.
The other book person I heard from was the publicist for Richard North Patterson’s “Exile: A Novel.” He felt I was unfair, and says that the book is not unfair to Israel, but rather, it is balanced–that the book engages in “fairness” a/k/a moral equivalency of Palestinian terrorists. As if that makes it so much better.
Still, the publicist asked me to review the book, and based on what I’ve read thus far, I’m not impressed. If anything, the book is worse than I surmised. It’s dedicated in part to the Arab American Institute’s anti-Semitic, anti-American Jim Zogby, whom Patterson credits with giving him the idea and encouragement to write it. How comforting.
Will let you know when I’m done with this way-too-long book exactly what I think of it.
Tags: ABC, Arab American Institute, correspondent, Iraq, Israel, J, Jim Zogby, Martha Raddatz, Martha Raddatz (Putnam), News correspondent, PS, Richard North Patterson, United States, USA Today, web entry