This is by far the most interesting, engaging, and startling of Nicky Hager's books about New Zealand to date. The subject matter is the dark - and sometimes ugly - side of politics.
The Hollow Men exposes the undergarments of political strategy setting, implementation and election campaigning.
Many of its insights apply not only to the National Party but probably to modern politics in general.
The legacy of this book is going to live long in the practice of political journalism in New Zealand.
For example, henceforth when John Key seems annoyed at a particular line of questioning reporters will ask themselves: is it because as a reporter I have overstepped the line of decency, or is it because my interview subject has been told to get irritated if I get too close to this question line?
This book is much, much more than a hatchet job on Dr Don Brash and an view inside the political process.
On reading this book the reader is taken inside a whole new vista of understanding of the National Party, its key players and how the practice of politics is presently conducted.
The book provides insights not only into the character of Don Brash, but into that of his staff, associates and senior colleagues. For anyone seriously interested in New Zealand politics it is treasure trove of knowledge and insight that should not be missed.
- C.D. Sludge