Worth a Look: Frank

by The Lit Chick.

FrankFormer Massachusetts Congressman Barney Frank discovered the two things about himself at age fourteen that mattered most: that he wanted to be a politician and that he was gay. In his new memoir, Frank: A Life in Politics from the Great Society to Same-Sex Marriage, he chronicles a life that has interwoven both.

The amount that Frank has witnessed and accomplished in his career (and the list of people he’s worked with) is staggering. He describes the political workings of some of the most influential legislation and events of the past four decades, with particular emphasis on those that closely affected the LGBT community, including battles to pass same-sex marriage in Massachusetts, events leading up to Proposition 8, the adoption of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, the many failed attempts to pass employment non-discrimination legislation, and the passage and eventual toppling of the Defense of Marriage Act. Also striking is the number of parallels he draws from the political missteps of the past and politics of today.

With his trademark intelligence, wit, and humor, Frank celebrates the rise in acceptance and subsequent equality for LGBT individuals, while at the same time lamenting the dramatic loss of faith Americans have had in government and politicians.

Through it all, Frank is, well, frank. He is as honest about his failures as his successes, is down to earth and relatable, and doesn’t mince words. If you’re a political junkie like me (and especially if you’re a House of Cards fan), you’ll really enjoy this book.