The Last President of Europe: Triumph and tragedy of Emmanuel Macron

Book review: William Drozdiak’s text is an essential guide to the first half of Macron’s term

Macron has emerged as the primary defender of liberal democracy and multilateralism, at odds with populist nationalist clones across the continent. Photograph: Charles Platiau/Reuters

Macron has emerged as the primary defender of liberal democracy and multilateralism, at odds with populist nationalist clones across the continent. Photograph: Charles Platiau/Reuters

Reading The Last President of Europe is like rewatching a Netflix series about the fluke election of an ambitious, dynamic young man to France’s highest office. We’ve seen the movie, but the plot was complicated.

Relying on unusual access to the Élysée and political circles in Washington, William Drozdiak, a veteran foreign correspondent and fellow at the Brookings Institute, lights up obscure corners with behind-the-scenes anecdotes and the wisdom of hindsight. He compensates for an occasionally dull narrative with faultless accuracy and documentation. His text is an indispensable reference book for the first half of Emmanuel Macron’s five-year term.

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