Yet for all of his influence, the world knows very little about Dick Cheney. The most powerful vice president in U.S. history has also been the most secretive and guarded of all public officials. "Am I the evil genius in the corner that nobody ever sees come out of his hole?" Cheney asked rhetorically in 2004. "It's a nice way to operate, actually."
Now, in Cheney: The Untold Story of America's Most Powerful and Controversial Vice President, New York Times best-selling author Stephen F. Hayes offers listeners a groundbreaking view into the world of this most enigmatic man. Having had exclusive access to Cheney himself, Hayes draws upon hundreds of interviews with the vice president, his boyhood friends, political mentors, family members, reticent staffers, and senior Bush administration officials to deliver a comprehensive portrait of one of the most important political figures in modern times.
The wide range of topics Hayes covers includes Cheney's withdrawal from Yale; his early run-ins with the law; the incident that almost got him blackballed from working in the Ford White House; his meteoric rise to congressional leadership; his opposition to removing Saddam Hussein from power after the first Gulf War; the solo, cross-country drive he took after leaving the Pentagon; his selection as Bush's running mate; his commanding performance on 9/11; the aggressive intelligence and interrogation measures he pushed in the aftermath of those attacks; and more.
This was no Robert A. Caro biography of Dick Cheney. Don't get me wrong, I am a fan of Cheney and after this book understand him better, but the work didn't seem to really get at the core of the man. Caro in his biographies examined a lot of things from the childhood years and from parents and friends growing up and put them all together into a pretty good portrait of the man. This book spent less time on what makes Cheney tick and more on basic facts. Overall three stars for effort but could have spent more time on why he is what he is as opposed to just giving us a history.