Summary and book reviews of A Vast Conspiracy by Jeffrey Toobin

A Vast Conspiracy

The Real Story of the Sex Scandal That Nearly Brought Down a President

by Jeffrey Toobin

A Vast Conspiracy by Jeffrey Toobin X
A Vast Conspiracy by Jeffrey Toobin
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

     Not Yet Rated
  • First Published:
    Dec 1999, 352 pages
    Paperback:
    Oct 2000, 496 pages

  • Rate this book


Buy This Book

About this Book

Book Summary

Casts an insightful, unbiased eye over the most extraordinary public saga of our time -- the Clinton sex scandals.

In A Vast Conspiracy, the best-selling author of The Run of His Life casts an insightful, unbiased eye over the most extraordinary public saga of our time -- the Clinton sex scandals. A superlative journalist known for the skillfulness of his investigating and the power of his writing, Jeffrey Toobin tells the unlikely story of the events that began over doughnuts in a Little Rock hotel and ended on the floor of the United States Senate, with only the second vote on Presidential removal in American history. This is an entirely fresh look at the scandal that very nearly brought down a president.

Packed with news-making disclosures and secret documents published here for the first time, Toobin unravels the three strands of a national scandal - those leading from Paula Jones, Kenneth Starr, and Monica Lewinsky - that created a legal, personal, and political disaster for Bill Clinton. A Vast Conspiracy is written with the narrative drive of a sensational (if improbable) legal thriller, and Toobin brilliantly explores the high principle and low comedy that were the hallmarks of the story. From Tripp to Goldberg, Isikoff to Hyde, the complex and tangled motivations behind the scandal are laid bare.

While misguided, outlandish behavior was played out at the very highest level, Toobin analyzes the facts and the key figures with a level of dignity and insight that this story has not yet received. The Clinton scandals will shape forever how we think about the signature issues of our day -- sex and sexual harassment, privacy and perjury, civil rights, and, yes, cigars. Toobin's book will shape forever how we think about the Clinton scandals.

From Chapter 17
"I Don't Care If I'm Impeached . . ."

For all the condemnation of Clinton's speech in the news media, the prosecution team didn't take any false optimism out of the events of August 17. In his grand jury testimony, the president had been more careful than in his deposition, seven months earlier.

Increasingly, the savvier members of the prosecution staff recognized that their entire case came down to the sex - whether the president had lied about it in his deposition and then in his grand jury testimony. In light of Clinton's refusal to answer certain questions, Bittman and Wisenberg had pinned him down as best they could. Before the grand jury, Clinton had repeated his position that as he understood the definition of sexual relations provided to him on January 18, he had not had such contacts with Lewinsky. Clinton had admitted to "inappropriate intimate contact," which he declined to spell out, but by a sort of process of elimination, he had ...

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Reviews

Media Reviews

Detroit Free Press
Toobin's book is literate, well-researched, penetrating and evenhanded, laying blame where it belongs, offering a reasonable perspective on this shabby case.

New York Times
His prose is fluent, direct and supple, his assessments pithy and succinct....He uses his legal expertise to assess defense and prosecution strategies, highlight crucial developments and sketch in the background of principle players in such a way that the stories create a mosaic of life.

New York Times
His prose is fluent, direct and supple, his assessments pithy and succinct....He uses his legal expertise to assess defense and prosecution strategies, highlight crucial developments and sketch in the background of principle players in such a way that the stories create a mosaic of life.

USA Today
A well-written, profoundly rational analysis...Toobin's book possesses fresh insights.

Detroit Free Press
Toobin's book is literate, well-researched, penetrating and evenhanded, laying blame where it belongs, offering a reasonable perspective on this shabby case.

Entertainment Weekly
A real page-turner...blunt, sardonic, often morbidly funny.

Entertainment Weekly
A real page-turner...blunt, sardonic, often morbidly funny.

Reader Reviews

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Readalikes

Readalikes Full readalike results are for members only

More books by Jeffrey Toobin

If you liked A Vast Conspiracy, try these:

  • Living History jacket

    Living History

    by Hillary Rodham Clinton

    Published 2004

    About this book

    A surprisingly engaging and, at points, even compelling book...Clinton provides enough of a peek behind the curtain to keep the pages turning and presents intriguing new details on her role in shaping the policies of her husband's presidency.

  • American Rhapsody jacket

    American Rhapsody

    by Joe Eszterhas

    Published 2001

    About this book

    A brilliant, unnerving, hugely entertaining look at our political culture, our heroes and villains - will delight some and outrage others, but it will not be ignored.

Non-members are limited to two results. Become a member
Search Readalikes again
How we choose readalikes
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: And The Ocean Was Our Sky
    And The Ocean Was Our Sky
    by Patrick Ness
    Patrick Ness has developed a reputation for experimental literature executed well, and his latest, ...
  • Book Jacket: Let It Bang
    Let It Bang
    by RJ Young
    Every interracial love story is an exercise in complications. R.J. Young and Lizzie Stafford's ...
  • Book Jacket: A Spark of Light
    A Spark of Light
    by Jodi Picoult
    The central premise of A Spark of Light involves a gunman holding hostages within the confines of a ...
  • Book Jacket: An Absolutely Remarkable Thing
    An Absolutely Remarkable Thing
    by Hank Green
    As one half of the extremely popular YouTube duo "Vlogbrothers" (the other half being his brother ...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
Unsheltered
by Barbara Kingsolver

A timely novel that explores the human capacity for resiliency and compassion.

About the book
Join the discussion!

Readers Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    Paris Echo
    by Sebastian Faulks

    A story of resistance, complicity, and an unlikely, transformative friendship.
    Reader Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    A Ladder to the Sky
    by John Boyne

    A seductive, unputdownable psychodrama following one brilliant, ruthless man.
    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win Severance

Severance by Ling Ma

An offbeat, wryly funny, apocalyptic satire that is featured on more than twenty 2018 "Must Read" lists!

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

I Ain't O U T F L S

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.