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Perhaps because my parents were teenagers during the period covered by this book, I found it an easy read, almost a page-turner. Doremus Jessup and his friends are fleshed-out nicely, but one must remember that Lewis uses every character in this book as an archetype for some position or attitude. For instance, token Communist Karl Pascal is used to represent the fractured Left, forming circular firing squads, which is as accurate today as it was in the 1930s. Lewis has fun with the names he uses for his characters, poking at some of the well-known persons of his era. I learned that during the Great War, sauerkraut was referred to as “Liberty cabbage,” showing that “Freedom fries” used against the French during the Iraq invasion had a historical antecedent.
Commenters have compared Buzz Windrip’s campaign to Donald Trump’s, and I suppose that 2016 could be compared to the fictional 1936 quite easily. But Windrip understood the political game and had a significantly skilled management team, so there is no comparison between 2017 and the fictional 1937.

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