100 Books for America: First: Sandra Day O’Connor

With 78 days until the election, let us continue looking at the 100 books every American should read. These write-ups will be short and not incredibly comprehensive looks at some books and novels that will help you become a better citizen. Check out all of the books that have been picked.

Sandra Day O’Connor is most powerful woman in American history – and it’s probably going to stay that way for a few generations.

As the swing justice on the Supreme Court for more than a decade, her role in everything from presidential elections to abortion is almost unparalleled.

In fact, she’s probably far more influential and powerful than half of our presidents were.

In a wonderfully written biography, Evan Thomas shows you how she ended up at the Supreme Court and takes you through her years of leadership on the court’s highest bench.

It’s got shocking revelations, including the fact that some twerp rube sent her a dicpic on her first day.

Thomas’s strength, and the importance of the book, is seeing how the first woman on the Supreme Court evolved into such a strong leader.

Whether it’s how she guided the court in Planned Parenthood V. Casey, which stopped Antonin Scalia’s chance at overturning Row V. Wade, but allowed states to restrict abortion, or Bush V. Gore, we see how she weighed her decisions.

We also get to see her as a fully drawn out human. The book is far from a hagiography, but gives you the sense of how she was able to cajole her colleagues into agreeing with her.


Previously, we looked at how a beloved president mastered a speech. Up next, a classic French novel with timeless lessons.

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