At first I was quite drawn to Pete's description of his industrial hometown and how its decline shaped his youth. Many of his descriptive passages are quite vivid. But by the mid-section and final chapters, I started feeling disappointed that Pete's memoir went only so far. He recounts some of the issues of his life but glosses over the emotions he must have felt. So I concluded this was a book written in a calculated manner to kick off his presidential campaign, even though he never once mentions his presidential ambitions. I think it is effective as a campaign autobiography, but it doesn't completely answer the question of "What makes Pete tick.?" That said, I found it more revealing than similar autobiographies by Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. but not as revealing as I would have liked. As a gay man, I especially would have welcomed more detail about his coming out process and his early gay experiences -- I doubt he was a virgin when he met Chasten. But as a campaign document, I can understand why he had to go light on the gay content. I did appreciate the chapter about meeting Chasten and interactions with his future inlaws. That chapter alone made this book a keeper for me. Strangely, though, he says much less about his relationship with his own parents.
(Review by KingChamp proprietor Thomas S. Brown)