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Moving between Honolulu, Jakarta and Saigon, against the historical backdrop of the final withdrawal from Vietnam, this novel is a bitingly funny, cumulatively devastating post-mortem of our national mores and institutions. A U.S. Senator, his wife, senatorial groupies and international arms dealing intersect with one another in this blistering indictment of American amnesia.

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  • Paperback | 234 pages
  • 129.54 x 200.66 x 17.78mm | 249.47g
  • Random House USA Inc
  • Vintage Books
  • New YorkUnited States
  • English
  • Reprint
  • 0679754857
  • 9780679754855
  • 181,123

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A gem...a beautifully composed story that moves with effortless authority and becomes astonishingly moving...Stirring and memorable." -- Newsday "Striking, provocative, and brilliantly written." -- The Atlantic

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Flap copy

Inez Victor knows that the major casualty of the political life is memory. But the people around Inez have made careers out of losing track. Her senator husband wants to forget the failure of his last bid for the presidency. Her husband's handler would like the press to forget that Inez's father is a murderer. And, in 1975, the year in which much of this bitterly funny novel is set, America is doing its best to lose track of its one-time client, the lethally hemorrhaging republic of South Vietnam. As conceived by Joan Didion, these personages and events constitute the terminal fallout of democracy, a fallout that also includes fact-finding junkets, senatorial groupies, the international arms market, and the Orwellian newspeak of the political class. Moving deftly from Honolulu to Jakarta, between romance, farce, and tragedy, Democracy is a tour de force from a writer who can dissect an entire society with a single phrase.

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About Joan Didion

Joan Didion was born in California and lives in New York City. She is the author of five novels and seven previous books of nonfiction.

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