Political Animal by David Mizner
a novel

No critic rating

Waiting for minimum critic reviews

See 4 Critic Reviews



Ben is a speechwriter on a congressman's primary election team, trying to get their man a Senate seat. Disillusionment is setting in, the candidate is grating, and Ben's funky bachelor's existence is unraveling like yesterday's election banner. He's acting out.

Using the floor for a closet, old tissues for toilet paper, he's bringing dishevelment to a high art. Ben's an indifferent housekeeper, to say the least, and his professional digs aren't any less unkempt. Their upkeep gets worse as the campaign wears on and his disaffection becomes greater. It's like a barrier he's constructing from flotsam.

Along with facing up to his candidate's failings, he's struggling against his growing affection for fellow campaign worker Calliope Berkowitz. The L word and its scary implications invade his life, so the pressure mounts to break out, make a stand, sneak away. She's a large-sized person, sucks the centers from M&Ms and favors formless clothes in which she walks around barefoot. But none of that is nearly enough to offset his utter surrender to her forthright, beguiling nature. The candidate he's working for is less than noble, but Ben has found true love amidst the bunting and his dirty socks, and it's not letting go.

David Mizner is an ex-Washington campaign worker and speechwriter turned Maine writer. He lives on Peaks Island, population: 1,000. This, his first book, is a sweet novel of young love and raunchy youth.


About David Mizner

See more books from this Author
David Mizner is a Washington campaign worker and speechwriter turned Maine writer.
Published September 1, 2004 by Soho Press. 324 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Political Animal

Kirkus Reviews

See more reviews from this publication

Ben Bergin is the worst kind of person you’d want working on a political campaign, or the best, and one of the merits of former speechwriter Mizner’s efforts here is that it’s difficult to tell which you’re supposed to think.

| Read Full Review of Political Animal: a novel

Publishers Weekly

See more reviews from this publication

Some Clinton-related controversies seem a bit quaint in the post-9/11 political landscape, but Mizner's cutting commentary on New York politics, its attendant disillusionments and its diverse supporting cast more than compensate.

| Read Full Review of Political Animal: a novel

Kirkus Reviews

See more reviews from this publication

Like politics itself, the ensuing account makes no pretense of beguiling the reader, instead dumping out fictionalized names and situations like toxic waste…Mystery insider's view or not, this is a delicious gift for your friends who still believe that politics and politicians have the answers.

Oct 20 2011 | Read Full Review of Political Animal: a novel

Entertainment Weekly

Set during a New York senatorial race at the height of the Clinton-Lewinsky unpleasantness, Mizner's hilarious debut, Political Animal, follows Ben Bergin, a speechwriter for a Brooklyn congressman as he falls out of love with his candidate and in love with Calliope, a free-spirited volunteer...

Sep 10 2004 | Read Full Review of Political Animal: a novel

Reader Rating for Political Animal

An aggregated and normalized score based on 7 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes

Rate this book!

Add Review