The Rogue: Searching for the Real Sarah Palin
rogue (r¯og), n: An elephant that has separated from a herd and roams about alone,in which state it is very savage.—Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary
After three years of research, bestselling journalist Joe McGinniss presents his already controversial and much anticipated investigative chronicle of Sarah Palin as an individual, politician, and cultural phenomenon.
In his critically acclaimed book about Alaska, Going to Extremes, the fledgling state itself was Joe McGinniss’s subject. Although he didn’t hesitate to reveal the many flaws and contradictions behind its “last frontier” image, McGinniss fell in love with the land and its people. More than three decades later, he returned to Alaska in search of its most famous resident, Sarah Palin.
On Election Day 2008, McGinniss began his on-the-ground reporting that culminated, famously, in his moving next door to Sarah Palin in spring 2010. THE ROGUE is the eagerly awaited result of his research and writing: a startling study of the illusion and reality of Sarah Palin—and a probing look at the Alaska and the America that produced her. Sometimes funny, sometimes frightening, always provocative and illuminating, THE ROGUE answers the questions “Who is she, really?,” “How did she happen?,” and “Will she ever go away?”
In all of his books, McGinniss has scrutinized the mysterious space between image and reality—how that space is created, negotiated, and/or manipulated. Now, with The Rogue, McGinniss combines his deep appreciation of the place Sarah Palin comes from with his uncanny ability to penetrate the façades of people in public life. The result is an extraordinary double narrative that alternately traces Palin’s curious rise to political prominence and worldwide celebrity status and recounts the author’s day-to-day experiences as he uncovers the messy reality beneath the glossy Palin myth.
Readers will find THE ROGUE at once bitingly insightful, hilarious, and profoundly ominous in what it reveals—not just about the dark underpinnings of a potential presidential nominee but also in regard to the huge numbers of Americans who passionately support her.
that all of a sudden I’ve … become an obsessive partisan, then it’s not accurate.” Maybe she was right about that. Maybe she’d been an obsessive partisan from the start and the only change was that she’d finally stopped pretending that she wasn’t. In an interview conducted in her house on Lake Lucille, Sarah lashed out against “misinformation.” Asked for an example, she said, “Some of the goofy things like who was Trig’s mom. Well, I’m Trig’s mom and do you want to see my medical records to
arms, uh, by ringin’ those bells and, um, by makin’ sure that as he’s ridin’ his horse through town to send those warnin’ shots and bells that, uh, we were gonna be secure and we were gonna be free … and we were gonna be armed.” As I wrote on my blog that night: Were Sarah’s version correct, the U.S. might still be a British colony today. We certainly wouldn’t have won the Revolutionary War. First of all, Sarah: Revere wasn’t warning “the British” of anything. He was warning the rebels about
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out that my house used to be an Oxford House. “The tenants were men recently released from prison, who were recovering addicts. What? No fence to protect sexy Sarah in her tank top? Dear God! Who was lurking in that house watching her children play?” And in Salon, Alex Pareene notes that I “wrote a critically respected book on Alaska 30 years ago” and that my “one reported story so far on Palin was factual and responsible. There’s nothing even remotely tabloidy about McGinniss’ Portfolio story
just like she said, it was because of all the attacks. Attack, attack, attack, that’s all people wanted to do. My daughter in Colorado sent me an e-mail after Sarah resigned, and I’m just so proud of her because, even living so far away, she understood. ‘People are so cruel,’ she wrote. I don’t think Sarah wanted to resign, but so much cruelty didn’t give her any choice.” This goes on for another hour. Dutifully, I take notes. This woman’s eyes are like laser beams on my notebook. She seems able