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FJ Book Club: A fictional spin on the life of Hillary Clinton

This week we’re reading Rodham.

Once a fortnight, a group of FJ readers gather together to dissect a new book with unrestrained candour. It’s open to all to join, you simply need to register your details below and we’ll email you details of that week’s Zoom meet.

For our next FJ Book Club pick, our editors have selected Curtis Sittenfeld’s Rodham.

The story is a reimagining of the life of Hillary Clinton. It starts with a real-life telling of her college days at Yale Law School, where she is at the forefront of student activism and the women’s rights movement. She is a woman so persuasive and full of promise, that Life magazine has covered her Wellesley commencement speech. Here, she also meets a charismatic and charming Bill Clinton.

In the real world, Hillary followed Bill back to Arkansas. He proposes several times and after several rejections, Hillary finally says yes. The rest is a history we all know well.

In Rodham, however, author Curtis Sittenfeld tracks a life unlived. She weaves a fictional tale in which Hillary endures a break-up with Bill, then proceeds to blaze her own trail over the next four years, as Hillary Rodham.

Image via Penguin Random House

The book brilliantly intersects again and again with actual historic events, all the while raising questions about the trade-offs we make in building our own lives and carving our own paths.

It’s one we’re pretty excited to dive into, and we hope you’ll join us.

To sign up to this FJ Book Club, slot in your details below and find yourself a copy of Rodham here. Our Rodham get-together will be on Thursday July 2 at 6.30pm AEST via Zoom.

FJ Book Club will continue every fortnight, with new title announcements dropping every other Monday.

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