‘An intimate, insightful portrait of an extraordinarily private leader’ WALTER ISAACSON
From the bestselling author of Enemies of the People
An intimate and deeply researched account of the extraordinary rise and political brilliance of the most powerful – and elusive – woman in the world.
Angela Merkel has always been an outsider. A pastor’s daughter raised in Soviet-controlled East Germany, she spent her twenties working as a research chemist, only entering politics after the fall of the Berlin Wall. And yet within fifteen years, she had become chancellor of Germany and, before long, the unofficial leader of the West.
Acclaimed author Kati Marton sets out to pierce the mystery of this unlikely ascent. With unparalleled access to the chancellor’s inner circle and a trove of records only recently come to light, she teases out the unique political genius that is the secret to Merkel’s success. No other modern leader has so ably confronted authoritarian aggression, enacted daring social policies and calmly unified an entire continent in an era when countries are becoming only more divided. Again and again, she’s cleverly outmanoeuvred strongmen like Putin and Trump, and weathered surprisingly complicated relationships with allies like Obama and Macron.
Famously private, the woman who emerges from these pages is a role model for anyone interested in gaining and keeping power while staying true to one’s moral convictions. At once a riveting political biography, an intimate human portrait and a revelatory look at successful leadership in action, The Chancellor brings forth from the shadows one of the most extraordinary women of our time.
About the author
Kati Marton is the New York Times bestselling author of nine books, including True Believer: Stalin's American Spy and Enemies of the People: My Family’s Journey to America, a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. Having grown up in communist Hungary, Marton brings to her biography of Merkel a shred experience of life behind the Iron Curtain. An award-winning former NPR correspondent and ABC News Bureau Chief in Germany, she now lives in New York City.
- ‘[Marton] has recruited a formidable cast of talking heads … and obtained a remarkable degree of access to the chancellor’s inner circle’The Times
- ‘One of the best and most readable text books we have about this “indispensable European” … a fascinating portrait of a powerful woman’Literary Review
- ‘A masterpiece of discernment and insight’New York Times
- ‘A riveting story, adroitly told, full of engrossing anecdotes and rich details’Los Angeles Review of Books
- ‘This is the best English-language biography of her rise from a tough and traditional family, through her career as a physical chemist in communist East Germany, to her current renown’ Foreign Affairs
- ‘It’s instructive to spend time in Merkel’s competent and humane company … [Marton] has doggedly retraced Merkel’s trail, and the story she brings is a good one’New York Times
- ‘Fascinating. For anyone who thinks they know a lot about Angela Merkel; for anyone who knows nothing about Angela Merkel – pick up this book and do not put it down until the very last page’New York Journal of Books
- ‘With her signature superpowers of rigorous research and unparalleled empathy, Marton brings us deep into the private sphere of Angela Merkel’Eliza Griswold
- ‘A compelling and memorable portrait … Angela Merkel’s life is a testament to the power of commitment, diligence, and the possibilities of politics … Tells that story with insight and grace’JON MEACHAM ‘An intimate, insightful portrait of an extraordinarily private leader, who, in her quiet and determined way, made Germany the economic and moral leader of Europe’WALTER ISAACSON ‘It’s a thrilling tale, skillfully told, and a reminder of the role of fate and timing in leadership’JONATHAN ALTER ‘Definitive and brilliantly written, I discovered again in reading it how astonishing Merkel’s life and career have been – and how eventful the period’VOLKER SCHLÖNDORFF