The Chancellor

Written by:
Kati Marton
Narrated by:
Alex Allwine , Kati Marton

Unabridged Audiobook

Release Date
October 2021
10 hours 13 minutes
The “captivating” (The New York Times), definitive biography of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, detailing the extraordinary rise and political brilliance of the most powerful—and elusive—woman in the world.

Angela Merkel has always been an outsider. A pastor’s daughter raised in Soviet-controlled East Germany, she spent her twenties working as a research chemist, entering politics only after the fall of the Berlin Wall. And yet within fifteen years, she had become chancellor of Germany and, before long, the unofficial leader of the West.

In this “masterpiece of discernment and insight” (The New York Times Book Review), acclaimed biographer Kati Marton sets out to pierce the mystery of Merkel’s unlikely ascent. With unparalleled access to the chancellor’s inner circle and a trove of records only recently come to light, she teases out the unique political genius that had been the secret to Merkel’s success. No modern leader so ably confronted Russian aggression, enacted daring social policies, and calmly unified an entire continent in an era when countries are becoming more divided. Again and again, she cleverly outmaneuvered strongmen like Putin and Trump, and weathered surprisingly complicated relationships with allies like Obama and Macron.

Famously private, the woman who emerges from this “impressively researched” (The Wall Street Journal) account is a role model for anyone interested in gaining and keeping power while staying true to one’s moral convictions. At once a “riveting” (Los Angeles Review of Books) political biography, an intimate human portrait, and a revelatory look at successful leadership in action, The Chancellor brings forth one of the most extraordinary women of our time.
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This was a good book. I read it as an audiobook during morning runs. Audiobook’s narrator has a soft voice, which was good. The book was about 10 hours long. Merkel is a famously private person (i don’t think she was interviewed for this) and the knowledge comes from HEAVY research interviews with her confidants. The book is wonderful in explaining her upbringings, which defines who she is. It includes lots of comparative chapters with other world leaders. The book has many several key insights into who she is. What the book does not have is Merkel criticisms. The author doesn’t really go into any potential drawbacks in her career, aside from those from the 2015 Refugee Crisis. I wish the author did talk more about the economic issues, political rivals, and things of that nature. I mean, as good as a leader she was, it’s not like her party retained the German Parliament. It’s a similar flaw which Pres Obama had, and which media has acknowledged. Of course, you cannot fit everything into one book, but I would have appreciated this angle. Overall, great novel which has all which you are seeking. Get ready to learn more about the PM, the nation she represented, and the newly emerging European worldview.

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