Rodham: What if Hillary hadn’t married Bill?

Book review: Sittenfeld’s premise is rich with opportunity but this art imitating life doesn’t ring true

Hillary Rodham  with Bill Clinton at Wellesley College in 1979. Photograph:  Wellesley College/Sygma via Getty

Hillary Rodham with Bill Clinton at Wellesley College in 1979. Photograph: Wellesley College/Sygma via Getty

During the 2018 publicity tour for Curtis Sittenfeld’s critically acclaimed short story collection, You Think It I’ll Say It, the author read The Nominee, its opening story, at Waterstones in London. The response was electric to what is a pitch-perfect account of an unnamed, female, US presidential Democratic candidate that is deeply ironic, insightful and provocative.

It raised high expectations for the novel it inspired with a new killer premise – what if Hillary Rodham had refused Bill Clinton’s marriage proposal and forged her own path?

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