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American Stories:
Tales of Hope and Anger


An engrossing account of a country on the edge by one of Australia’s most well-known journalists.

(Trade paperback)
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An engrossing account of a country on the edge by one of Australia’s most well-known journalists

In July 2009, Michael Brissenden traded political reporting in Canberra for a job in Washington as US current affairs correspondent for the ABC.

Here is his fascinating chronicle of an America in turmoil. From the desolate coal-mining hollers of West Virginia to Washington’s ghettos and the Mormon communities of Utah, Brissenden travels the country with unprecedented scope to grapple with the issues and to tell the stories of the players, the hopeful true believers, the skeptics, the winners and the losers.

He follows the long and fractious political process that will either deliver Barack Obama a chance to be a truly transformative president or place him alongside one-term leaders like Jimmy Carter, and he watches the Republican Party tear itself apart to find a fitting opponent for Obama. Will America’s first black president meet the enormous expectations of his voters, and the rest of the world?

With wry humour and cutting insight, Brissenden explores this extraordinary moment in US history and shares his tales of people, identity and culture – American stories of hope and anger.

Michael Brissenden

Michael Brissenden

Currently ABC Correspondent in Washington, Michael Brissenden has been a political journalist and a foreign correspondent for the ABC since the 1980s. He has reported from Russia, the Middle East, South East Asia, Europe, the Pacific and the Americas and has covered many of the biggest international stories from all corners of the globe. From 2003 to 2009 he was political editor for The 7.30 Report.

For some years Michael was a regular contributor to Matilda.com. He has written for The Bulletin and has been a food and wine critic for the Canberra Times. He has also contributed to two published collections of essays: Travellers Tales 1 and The Science Minister and the Sea Cow – Thirteen essays on the nature of choice. His political analysis features regularly on ABC Online.