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Barack and Joe: The Making of an Extraordinary Partnership

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The extraordinary partnership of Barack Obama and Joe Biden is unique in American history. The two men, their characters and styles sharply contrasting, formed a dynamic working relationship that evolved into a profound friendship. Based on original interviews, media reports, memoirs and other accounts, Barack and Joe is the first book to tell the full story of their The extraordinary partnership of Barack Obama and Joe Biden is unique in American history. The two men, their characters and styles sharply contrasting, formed a dynamic working relationship that evolved into a profound friendship. Based on original interviews, media reports, memoirs and other accounts, Barack and Joe is the first book to tell the full story of their historic relationship and its substantial impact on the Obama presidency and its legacy. Their affinity was not predestined. Barack and Joe began wary of each other, as senators each eyeing a run at the presidency; gradually they came to respect their competitor's values and strengths, growing so fond of each other they were often caught on camera hugging, joking and even crying together. Never had such a relationship been witnessed within the walls of the White House. Side-by-side through two tension-filled terms, they shared the day-to-day joys and travails of leading the most powerful nation on earth. Joe took on an unprecedented role as chief adviser to Obama, reshaping the vice presidency. Together, they took Americans through a dire economic crisis, passage of health care reform, changing perceptions of gay marriage, a national reckoning with mass shootings and police killings of unarmed black men, a shift in America's policy in Iraq, and the elimination of Osama bin Laden. As friends, Barack and Joe weathered the strains on their relationship--magnified by intense media scrutiny--and experienced joy and sadness together: Barack provided comfort to Joe through the loss of his son Beau. As high-level exemplars, the president and the vice president modeled the virtues of male friendship for men everywhere. In the Trump era, many Americans are nostalgic for the Obama presidency, the absence of scandal, the dedication to truth, the respect for the media. What Americans also remember fondly is the warmth and decency of Barack and Joe's friendship.


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The extraordinary partnership of Barack Obama and Joe Biden is unique in American history. The two men, their characters and styles sharply contrasting, formed a dynamic working relationship that evolved into a profound friendship. Based on original interviews, media reports, memoirs and other accounts, Barack and Joe is the first book to tell the full story of their The extraordinary partnership of Barack Obama and Joe Biden is unique in American history. The two men, their characters and styles sharply contrasting, formed a dynamic working relationship that evolved into a profound friendship. Based on original interviews, media reports, memoirs and other accounts, Barack and Joe is the first book to tell the full story of their historic relationship and its substantial impact on the Obama presidency and its legacy. Their affinity was not predestined. Barack and Joe began wary of each other, as senators each eyeing a run at the presidency; gradually they came to respect their competitor's values and strengths, growing so fond of each other they were often caught on camera hugging, joking and even crying together. Never had such a relationship been witnessed within the walls of the White House. Side-by-side through two tension-filled terms, they shared the day-to-day joys and travails of leading the most powerful nation on earth. Joe took on an unprecedented role as chief adviser to Obama, reshaping the vice presidency. Together, they took Americans through a dire economic crisis, passage of health care reform, changing perceptions of gay marriage, a national reckoning with mass shootings and police killings of unarmed black men, a shift in America's policy in Iraq, and the elimination of Osama bin Laden. As friends, Barack and Joe weathered the strains on their relationship--magnified by intense media scrutiny--and experienced joy and sadness together: Barack provided comfort to Joe through the loss of his son Beau. As high-level exemplars, the president and the vice president modeled the virtues of male friendship for men everywhere. In the Trump era, many Americans are nostalgic for the Obama presidency, the absence of scandal, the dedication to truth, the respect for the media. What Americans also remember fondly is the warmth and decency of Barack and Joe's friendship.

30 review for Barack and Joe: The Making of an Extraordinary Partnership

  1. 4 out of 5

    Raymond

    Barack and Joe is a great refresher about the real life bond between the former president and vice-president. Levingston's book chronicles the relationship by highlighting important events from their days in the Senate to the more current moment of Biden deciding to run for President in the 2020 cycle. The author does a great job recounting the veepstakes process of Obama picking Biden to be his running mate. I believe it was the first detailed account that I have read of the negotiations Barack and Joe is a great refresher about the real life bond between the former president and vice-president. Levingston's book chronicles the relationship by highlighting important events from their days in the Senate to the more current moment of Biden deciding to run for President in the 2020 cycle. The author does a great job recounting the veepstakes process of Obama picking Biden to be his running mate. I believe it was the first detailed account that I have read of the negotiations between the two as well as the debates between campaign staff. It is impossible not to read this book in the context of the 2020 election. This is not a biased book for or against Biden as a presidential candidate. I commend the author for being fair, it covers the positive aspects of Biden while also reminding the reader of the many gaffes he has said in the past that people may have forgotten. As the author mentions in the book, this is definitely a first draft of the relationship between the two individuals. I look forward to reading a larger book that focused on additional events in detail such as their discussions/debates during the Bin Laden raid, the Libya intervention, the BP oil spill and other major events, more along the lines of Peter Baker's Days of Fire: Bush and Cheney in the White House, which recounts the Bush-Cheney years and their relationship. Overall, if you are looking for an enjoyable and nostalgic book about the interracial Batman and Robin then look look no further than Levingston's work. Thanks to Hachette Books and Net Galley for an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Betsy

    Ooh, Hachette and NetGalley just approved me for this hot upcoming (b)romance novel :p Sweet! Thanks for the DRC!

  3. 5 out of 5

    Genevieve Trono

    Barack and Joe is an intimate look at the making of the powerful partnership between Barack Obama and Joe Biden. It shares both the professional and personal journey these two went on as they navigated a campaign, a presidency, family loss, and day to day life challenges. I appreciated that it looked at both the highs and lows and enjoyed that at first, they weren't quite sure of one another as they were both eyeing a run at the presidency. Watching their connection unfold as Barack eventually Barack and Joe is an intimate look at the making of the powerful partnership between Barack Obama and Joe Biden. It shares both the professional and personal journey these two went on as they navigated a campaign, a presidency, family loss, and day to day life challenges. I appreciated that it looked at both the highs and lows and enjoyed that at first, they weren't quite sure of one another as they were both eyeing a run at the presidency. Watching their connection unfold as Barack eventually chooses Biden as his running mate was so interesting to see and just like any relationship, it didn't all happen perfectly. I loved reading this and it was a wonderful reminder of two men that are honest, fair and just good people during their time in office and beyond. It was a bit bittersweet as it made me miss parts of our country that feel so different just a few years later. If you are also looking for a reminder of the good, this is a great place to start. Thank you to NetGalley and Hachette Books for an advanced copy.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Janet

    When it is hot as heck outside and there is nothing cool to do but reading as everything else makes you end up a sweaty mess, it is the perfect day for a speed reader. I received a temporary digital Advance Reader Copy of this book from #NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. From the publisher, as I do not repeat the contents or story of books in reviews, I let them do it as they do it better than I do . A vivid and inspiring account of the "bromance" between Barack Obama and Joe Biden. When it is hot as heck outside and there is nothing cool to do but reading as everything else makes you end up a sweaty mess, it is the perfect day for a speed reader. I received a temporary digital Advance Reader Copy of this book from #NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. From the publisher, as I do not repeat the contents or story of books in reviews, I let them do it as they do it better than I do 😸. A vivid and inspiring account of the "bromance" between Barack Obama and Joe Biden. The extraordinary partnership of Barack Obama and Joe Biden is unique in American history. The two men, their characters and styles sharply contrasting, formed a dynamic working relationship that evolved into a profound friendship. Their affinity was not predestined. Obama and Biden began warily of each other: Obama an impatient freshman disdainful of the Senate's plodding ways; Biden a veteran of the chamber and proud of its traditions. Gradually they came to respect each other's values and strengths and rode into the White House together in 2008. Side-by-side through two tension-filled terms, they shared the day-to-day joys and struggles of leading the most powerful nation on earth. They accommodated each other's quirks: Biden's famous miscues kept coming, and Obama overlooked them knowing they were insignificant except as media fodder. With his expertise in foreign affairs and legislative matters, Biden took on an unprecedented role as chief adviser to Obama, reshaping the vice presidency. Together Obama and Biden guided Americans through a range of historic moments: a devastating economic crisis, racial confrontations, the war in Afghanistan, and the dawn of same-sex marriage nationwide. They supported each other through highs and lows: Obama provided a welcome shoulder during the illness and death of Biden's son Beau. As many Americans turn a nostalgic eye toward the Obama presidency, "Barack and Joe" offers a new look at this administration, its absence of scandal, dedication to truth, and respect for the media. This is the first book to tell the full story of this historic relationship and its substantial impact on the Obama presidency and its legacy. Love and marriage /.Horse and Carriage/ Baskin and Robbin's / Cheese and Grits / Barack and Joe - you can't have one without the other! They say that opposites attract and this book proves it - on a political level, a friendship level and it resulted in a dynamic team leading the country and a decided lack of scandal. (what DID the Daily Mail write about those eight years? Lol). I am not a political fanatic or even a fan of politics most days but this book was easy to read: there were a lot of meticulously researched facts but it was not boring. I loved reading about their "bromance" - and everyone who loves/loved the Democratic Dream Team will enjoy this book as would book clubs! As always, I try to find a reason to not rate with stars as I love emojis (outside of their incessant use by "Social Influencer Millennials" on Instagram and Twitter) so let's give it 🦙🦙🦙🦙🦙 (I could not find any Democratic donkeys so llamas had to do!)

  5. 5 out of 5

    Donna Hines

    I love a book that provides such thoughtful insight in a manner in which it's fair to all sides without the need to be politically correct. It truly doesn't matter what side of the aisle you are on what matters is the fact we don't lose sight of the goals and where we want the world to go into the future. It's about coming together to work for a common cause and while these two bromanships is like water and oil in terms of their diverse backgrounds they came together when it mattered most and got I love a book that provides such thoughtful insight in a manner in which it's fair to all sides without the need to be politically correct. It truly doesn't matter what side of the aisle you are on what matters is the fact we don't lose sight of the goals and where we want the world to go into the future. It's about coming together to work for a common cause and while these two bromanships is like water and oil in terms of their diverse backgrounds they came together when it mattered most and got the job done. Those smiles, their laughter, their fun and good natured ways lead to a much more relaxed atmosphere. In times of turmoil, hysterics, paranoia, it was so comforting to not wake up every day and see such horrific headlines about 'the one' and narcissistic ways. What an amazing run they had together both as President and Vice President. Good Luck to Joe Biden in his biggest role ever- President in 2020! This Scranton Native is missed!

  6. 4 out of 5

    Jean

    I love this book so much! I respect these two men completely. You will be so happy at their amazing friendship! This book does not disappoint explaining how their close friendship just kept growing. I deeply enjoyed reading about them again as I have missed them so much! Thank you so much, the writer, NetGalley and the Publisher for giving me the opportunity to read about these men again!

  7. 4 out of 5

    Susan

    This was a wonderful look inside the relationship between our recent president and his VP. Mr. Levingston did a great job of highlighting what went into making this bond, the good and the bad, and what made it so unique. I revisited cherished moments of their administration and learned some news things about each man. And, I'll tell you, if you don't cry at Mr. Levington's description of Beau's funeral or Joe's Presidential Medal of Freedom ceremony, something might be wrong with you. My This was a wonderful look inside the relationship between our recent president and his VP. Mr. Levingston did a great job of highlighting what went into making this bond, the good and the bad, and what made it so unique. I revisited cherished moments of their administration and learned some news things about each man. And, I'll tell you, if you don't cry at Mr. Levington's description of Beau's funeral or Joe's Presidential Medal of Freedom ceremony, something might be wrong with you. My appreciation for and understanding of both men, and their families, increased quite a bit. I really enjoyed the unique perspective in what is basically a history of the Obama-Biden presidency. Thanks to NetGalley and Hatchette Books for a copy of the book. This review is my own opinion.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Peter Z.

    "Absence of scandal" "Absence of scandal" 🤣

  9. 5 out of 5

    Courts & Castles Books

    I really enjoyed this book. Though I am probably biased, I thought it was a pretty fair account of history. It wasn’t so much about politics but about the relationship between these two amazing men. It read really well, especially for nonfiction.

  10. 5 out of 5

    kristinasbookishlife

    Note: I received this book complimentary from Hatchett through Netgalley. This is my honest review. Imagine getting to work with your closest friend? One that becomes more like a brother after being your political rival? I’m sure it was challenging in the beginning and over time became a relationship of trust. It must feel good to have someone you trust being able to watch your back, in what is the most stressful role. This is a book that I have been looking forward to after watching and reading Note: I received this book complimentary from Hatchett through Netgalley. This is my honest review. Imagine getting to work with your closest friend? One that becomes more like a brother after being your political rival? I’m sure it was challenging in the beginning and over time became a relationship of trust. It must feel good to have someone you trust being able to watch your back, in what is the most stressful role. This is a book that I have been looking forward to after watching and reading about their blossoming friendship/brotherhood. The memes also kept us craving to understand more of their relationship. This book did not disappoint. It left me missing “Barack and Joe” more than I thought was possible. I walked away knowing more about them and their values. This book made me feel like I was wrapped up in a hug. The author did a really good job of portraying Barack and Joe’s relationship.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Heather Bennett

    Barack and Joe is a interesting book and I enjoyed reading this. A good book to read. Well written and you will learn a bit about Biden.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Debra Saturday

    Nowadays, it is common to see the words, ' Don't you miss these guys?' when referring to Barack Obama and Joe Biden. Indeed, I think we do miss them. Even the other side of the aisle in Congress probably wishes the political world was a be more polite as it was with the former President and the former Vice President. In this book, Mr. Levingston goes into deliberate detail as to what made Mr. Obama and Mr. Biden, the team. And yes, it was a team, yet it was a long time in the making. The book Nowadays, it is common to see the words, ' Don't you miss these guys?' when referring to Barack Obama and Joe Biden. Indeed, I think we do miss them. Even the other side of the aisle in Congress probably wishes the political world was a be more polite as it was with the former President and the former Vice President. In this book, Mr. Levingston goes into deliberate detail as to what made Mr. Obama and Mr. Biden, the team. And yes, it was a team, yet it was a long time in the making. The book acknowledges how these political men were different, and yet as time tells, the subtleties of their beliefs became apparent. How these similarities played out is what makes them the dream team. Mr. Levingston tells and shows how they worked out their differences to provide the best they had for the country. Their prime focus was taking the country into a stable place in the world. While Obama needed Biden's international experience, Biden needed Mr. Obama's fresh take and youthful energy. "Barack and Joe" is not a 'buddy' or 'bromance' book. It is a book that shows you how it all happened, and most importantly, why it needed to happen. The writing is clear, concise, and entertaining. You can see how it all played out, and you enjoy the ride getting there. I have recommended: (five green books) 📗📗📗📗📗.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Alina

    The political bromance, Barack and Joe's friendship, and collaboration will forever leave its footprint in American history. Starting from political rivals, the two managed to build a strong foundation of the phenomenal President & Vice President team. This book tells the story of two democratic US senators who came from two completely opposite backgrounds but shared an important mission. This is not a biography of either man, this is a story of their bond, the way they were able to look past The political bromance, Barack and Joe's friendship, and collaboration will forever leave its footprint in American history. Starting from political rivals, the two managed to build a strong foundation of the phenomenal President & Vice President team. This book tells the story of two democratic US senators who came from two completely opposite backgrounds but shared an important mission. This is not a biography of either man, this is a story of their bond, the way they were able to look past their differences, listened and accepted each other's objectives, and most importantly - held one another's back. An author made an excellent note regarding the two: The Barack-and-Joe friendship did something else: it stirred the imagination. It gave Americans hope that the nation could work together harmoniously. Barack and Joe looked beyond color and age and personal quirks to the importance of shared values. This book is an easy read. I didn't find any new information in it, however, it is a perfect guide for any political enthusiast that contains all the facts of Barack and Joe's friendship and partnership during their time in The Office.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Cozy Cat Reviews

    This is a exquisite book detailing the wonderful respect and friendship between our great President Obama and Vice President Biden that grew from their patriotism and love of country. Both men had a deep respect for each other and this chronicles their road to friendship and how they shared the same patriotism morals (and beliefs) to serve our country. It is a wonderful read of a great time in our history of our greatest President in 50 years and his working relationship with a equally great This is a exquisite book detailing the wonderful respect and friendship between our great President Obama and Vice President Biden that grew from their patriotism and love of country. Both men had a deep respect for each other and this chronicles their road to friendship and how they shared the same patriotism morals (and beliefs) to serve our country. It is a wonderful read of a great time in our history of our greatest President in 50 years and his working relationship with a equally great Vice President. I highly recommend this book. This is a wonderful book to give as gifts and to have as a hard cover for one's own library. Very well done to the author. . Thank you for the ARC. My opinion is my own.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Phil

    This is a very personal story. If you're looking for policy specifics, this is not the source. That Barack and Joe redefined the relationship between President and his Vice-President is undeniable. Carter and Mondale certainly had a strong partnership and bond. Obama and Biden went beyond, to a deep personal friendship that included their families. Neither granted interviews for the Levingston book. No doubt, the timing of a presidential campaign played into that decision. Still, we are reminded This is a very personal story. If you're looking for policy specifics, this is not the source. That Barack and Joe redefined the relationship between President and his Vice-President is undeniable. Carter and Mondale certainly had a strong partnership and bond. Obama and Biden went beyond, to a deep personal friendship that included their families. Neither granted interviews for the Levingston book. No doubt, the timing of a presidential campaign played into that decision. Still, we are reminded of what was and what we, as a nation, have lost.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Heidi Lengenfelder

    Thanks to NetGalley and Hachette Books for an eARC of this book for an honest review. I loved watching the friendship between Obama and Biden over the eight years they shared as President and Vice President. This book does a really great job of chronicling their friendship along the way. It follows their professional and personal journeys. I have always been a big fan of these two and this book solidified my appreciation for them. If you're a fan of these two, pick this book up and you will not Thanks to NetGalley and Hachette Books for an eARC of this book for an honest review. I loved watching the friendship between Obama and Biden over the eight years they shared as President and Vice President. This book does a really great job of chronicling their friendship along the way. It follows their professional and personal journeys. I have always been a big fan of these two and this book solidified my appreciation for them. If you're a fan of these two, pick this book up and you will not be disappointed.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Stevie

    Very good read

  18. 4 out of 5

    Melissa

    I am a huge fan of Obama's books and loved Biden's last book. This take on the two men just didn't grab my attention. It was slow going, and I had to put it down several times.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Doris Raines

    I REALLY LOVE THIS BOOK.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Judy

    For one who loved the dynamic duo, this is a book that enlightens and enhances what on behind closed doors, how their beliefs intertwined and lots more. If you loved Barack in office, you will love this book. Brilliant book! Truly brilliant!

  21. 5 out of 5

    KT Lev

  22. 5 out of 5

    Cara

  23. 5 out of 5

    Mathieu

  24. 5 out of 5

    Elliot

  25. 4 out of 5

    Pebble

  26. 4 out of 5

    Na

  27. 5 out of 5

    James E Woolard

  28. 5 out of 5

    Dave Tardella

  29. 5 out of 5

    Carrie

  30. 5 out of 5

    Heidi Grey

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