I can’t imagine any journalist not devouring Chasing History: A Kid in the Newsroom (Henry Holt and Company, 2022) by Carl Bernstein.
With that said, this book isn’t just for journalists. History buffs will for certain be enthralled, as will those who want a better understanding of the newspaper business—or at least what it was like.
It’s interesting to learn about how the coverage of major news events were handled—like President John F. Kennedy’s murder, Russias’ space advances, politics, and more mundane stories.
In many ways it’s a look behind the headlines. It shows the effort it takes to get a story to the people.
This memoir isn’t about what Bernstein might be best known for—his coverage of Watergate with Bob Woodward at the Washington Post that led to the resignation of President Richard Nixon. Read All the Presidents’ Men to learn about that saga.
Chasing History ends before Watergate begins. It’s about Bernstein’s early years, growing up, and how at 16 he became a copyboy for the afternoon paper, the Evening Star. Beginnings like that don’t happen anymore.