Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity

About Chris  |    @TheFix  @TheHyperFix  @FixAaron  @FixFelicia  |   Facebook  |  Fast Fix  |  RSS Feeds RSS
Posted at 10:57 AM ET, 01/27/2011

Time: Mark Salter wrote anonymous Obama novel 'O'

By Rachel Weiner

The "O" mystery is over, at least according to Time magazine.

Mark Halperin writes that the anonymous scribe behind this month's Obama novel is Mark Salter, a former aide to and speechwriter for Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.).

"As I've said for a week or more, I've been asked not to comment and I won't," Salter told The Post.

The New York Post first suggested that Salter was behind the book. "His adjective-filled style is similar to the 'O' author's," Page Six wrote. There are also critical depictions of Obama aides and some disparaging remarks about Sarah Palin.

A New York Magazine profile of Salter said: "After the chaos and dysfunction of the campaign, Salter made an important personal decision: He would continue to write speeches for McCain, and collect a check, but he would no longer fight McCain on political matters. He wanted to try his hand at writing fiction."

Halperin says he's confirmed the story with sources, but he also offers some clues. Among other things, "There is a story early in the book based on a real-life tale that would have been known only to a McCain campaign insider such as Salter."

Before the novel was released, publisher Jonathan Karp sent out a mass e-mail to journalists and politicos asking suspects not to confirm or deny any speculation.

Salter worked with McCain for over two decades and helped him write five books, including the memoir "Faith of My Fathers." The searing account of McCain's early life and captivity in Vietnam got positive reviews. "O," by contrast, got a cold reception. It "isn't as good as you hoped or as bad as you feared," according to The Post's relatively gentle review. The New York Times was less kind: "The author of 'O' is described on the book flap as someone who 'has been in the room with Barack Obama,' but given this novel's many inane implausibilities, the reader can't help but think that the writer was either a lousy observer or that the room was really enormous -- a hotel ballroom, perhaps, or maybe a convention center."

By Rachel Weiner  | January 27, 2011; 10:57 AM ET
 
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Palin's PAC raised $279k to close 2010

 
 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2011 The Washington Post Company