NATIONAL BESTSELLER • Senator John McCain tells the story of his great American journey, from the U.S. Navy to his electrifying campaign for the presidency in 2000, interwoven with heartfelt portraits of the mavericks who have inspired him through the years.

After five and a half years as a prisoner of war in Vietnam, naval aviator John McCain returned home a changed man. Regaining his health and flight-eligibility status, he resumed his military career, commanding carrier pilots and serving as the navy’s liaison to what is sometimes ironically called the world’s most exclusive club, the United States Senate. Accompanying Senators John Tower and Henry “Scoop” Jackson on international trips, McCain began his political education in the company of two masters, leaders whose standards he would strive to maintain upon his election to the U.S. Congress. There, he learned valuable lessons in cooperation from a good-humored congressman from the other party, Morris Udall. In 1986, McCain was elected to the U.S. Senate, inheriting the seat of another role model, Barry Goldwater.

During his time in public office, McCain has seen acts of principle and acts of craven self-interest. He describes both extremes in these pages, with his characteristic straight talk and humor. He writes honestly of the lowest point in his career, the Keating Five savings and loan debacle, as well as his triumphant moments—his return to Vietnam and his efforts to normalize relations between the U.S. and Vietnamese governments; his fight for campaign finance reform; and his galvanizing bid for the presidency in 2000.

Writes McCain: “A rebel without a cause is just a punk. Whatever you’re called—rebel, unorthodox, nonconformist, radical—it’s all self-indulgence without a good cause to give your life meaning.” This is the story of McCain’s causes, the people who made him do it, and the meaning he found. Worth the Fighting For reminds us of what’s best in America, and in ourselves.

Praise for Worth the Fighting For

“When [John] McCain writes of people and patriotism, his pages shine with a devotion, a loving awe, that makes Worth the Fighting For worth the shelling out for. . . . McCain the man remains one of the most inspiring public figures of his generation.”—Jonathan Raunch, The Washington Post

“[An] unpredictable, outspoken memoir . . . a testimonial to heroism from someone who has first-hand knowledge of what it takes.”The New York Times
“When [John] McCain writes of people and patriotism, his pages shine with a devotion, a loving awe, that makes Worth the Fighting For worth the shelling out for. . . . McCain the man remains one of the most inspiring public figures of his generation.”—Jonathan Raunch, The Washington Post

“[An] unpredictable, outspoken memoir . . . a testimonial to heroism from someone who has first-hand knowledge of what it takes.”The New York Times

Worth the Fighting For is a worthy read. It will make you more aware of the national situation. It will make you want to be a better citizen. And, whether or not you agree with McCain's political philosophies, it will help you appreciate his candid, straightforward nature.”Deseret News

“It's a gripping story, well told, and one that serves as an accessible and lively introduction to the last quarter century of American politics. . . . It strikes me as a perfect holiday gift for politically interested college students and young people.”—William Kristol, The Weekly Standard

“With bluntness and humor he writes about the people who have inspired him, memorable experiences as a senator, his involvement in the Keating Five scandal, the fight for campaign finance reform and his losing bid for the presidential nomination in 2000—all a story worth waiting for.”The Indianapolis Star

“No campaign puff job, this lively and stimulating book that McCain and his longtime aid Mark Salter have written tells much about the current political scene and much about McCain.”Houston Chronicle

“[McCain] describes his evolution from national war hero to a man labeled a traitor by members of his own party. He reflects on some of the high points and lowest moments in his career. He makes no apologies for his bald ambition or his hot temper and admits many political missteps. The result makes for enjoyable reading.”BusinessWeek

“[McCain] takes pride in his status as a maverick and pays tribute to inspirational figures . . . an engaging storyteller.”Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“[Worth the Fighting For] is the work of someone who has found out, rather late in life, who he is and what he truly believes. Self-discovery seems to give [McCain] the nerve to speak his mind with a candor rare among politicians. The result is a book packed with extraordinary indiscretions for a still-practicing politician.”—Russell Baker, The New York Review of Books