Monday, June 26, 2017

Al Franken, Giant of the Senate, by Al Franken (author, narrator)

Hachette Audio, May 2017

Al Franken grew up a Jewish kid in suburban Minnesota, went to Harvard, and became a comedian. That's vastly oversimplified, and he tells the story much more entertainingly as well as much more completely.

His career as a comedian, though, including being one of the original writers, and eventually a performer, on Saturday Night Live. It was never a timid show, though they also tried to avoid leaning too much to either side politically. They were entertainers, not political pundits.

Franken, though, had very definite political views, and this book is, mainly, about how he moved from comedy to politics, became a Senator, and what he's done since.

Franken is smart, funny, and irreverent, with a talent for biting satire. The humor and satire he mostly doesn't get to use in Senate, but they're deployed judiciously here. His intelligence, knowledge, and willingness to both work hard, and to pay attention to his hardworking staff, mean that he has a lot to say that's worth listening to. As a political liberal, he and I share values that are deeply important to me.

His account of working in the Senate, and working with Senators of both parties, is fascinating and educational. You can learn a lot from reading his book, whether or not those liberal values I mentioned are values you share.

Highly recommended.

I bought this audiobook.