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Shortest Way Home

One Mayor's Challenge and A Model for America's Future
Narrated by: Pete Buttigieg
Length: 9 hrs and 57 mins
Categories: Nonfiction, Politics
4.5 out of 5 stars (18 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

A mayor's inspirational story of a Midwest city that has become nothing less than a blueprint for the future of American renewal. Once described by the Washington Post as "the most interesting mayor you've never heard of," Pete Buttigieg, the 37-year-old mayor of South Bend, Indiana, has now emerged as one of America's most visionary politicians. 

With soaring prose that celebrates a resurgent American Midwest, Shortest Way Home narrates the heroic transformation of a "dying city" (Newsweek) into nothing less than a shining model of urban reinvention. Elected at 29 as the nation's youngest mayor, Pete Buttigieg immediately recognised that "great cities, and even great nations, are built through attention to the everyday". As Shortest Way Home recalls, the challenges were daunting - whether confronting gun violence, renaming a street in honour of Martin Luther King Jr., or attracting tech companies to a city that had appealed more to junk bond scavengers than serious investors. 

None of this is underscored more than Buttigieg's audacious campaign to reclaim 1,000 houses, many of them abandoned, in 1,000 days and then, even as a sitting mayor, deploying to serve in Afghanistan as a Navy officer. 

Yet the most personal challenge still awaited Buttigieg, who came out in a South Bend Tribune editorial, just before being reelected with 78 percent of the vote, and then finding Chasten Glezman, a middle-school teacher, who would become his partner for life.  

While Washington reels with scandal, Shortest Way Home, with its graceful, often humorous language, challenges our perception of the typical American politician. In chronicling two once-unthinkable stories that of an Afghanistan veteran who came out and found love and acceptance, all while in office, and that of a revitalised Rust Belt city no longer regarded as "flyover country", Buttigieg provides a new vision for America's shortest way home.

©2019 Peter Buttigieg (P)2019 Hodder & Stoughton Limited

Critic Reviews

"The best American political biography since Obama's Dreams from My Father." (Guardian)

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Give this man the Oval Office!

This book is essential to understand the meteoric rise of Mayor Pete. Brilliant, overwhelming, thoughtful.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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A hope for the future

Loved the book and the voice of Pete. I hope he becomes president. highly recommend.

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President Pete!

he's intellectual, honest, competent, a great individual and a great politician. Pete is the kind of person we need as a leader of the free world!