Heather Wilhelm explores the Hillary Clinton political memoir for National Review Online readers.

[W]hile many Americans might wonder why on earth anyone would spend their free time reading a book rehashing what should be fairly obvious by now — Hillary Clinton is not a very good politician — What Happened does manage to offer some valuable insights. Unfortunately, they’re not the ones the author intends.

Let’s talk about David Foster Wallace, shall we? Hillary Clinton does, bringing up his famous “This Is Water” commencement speech in her chapter entitled “On Being a Woman in Politics.” She’s referring to the deeply moving and widely read address in which Wallace discusses human nature and life’s various struggles, noting that “the most obvious realities are often the ones that are the hardest to see and talk about.” The speech opens with an anecdote about two fish who fail to recognize that they are completely immersed in water.

This, according to Clinton, “sums up the problem of recognizing sexism — especially when it comes to politics — quite nicely.”

When I read this, I briefly looked around the room, aghast, hoping to share my astonishment. Alas, I had no company, save for the battered ghost of irony silently popping pills in the corner. For heaven’s sake, Hillary Clinton! Wallace was talking about self-centeredness and about our frail human tendency to cast our own obsessions and cloistered view of reality — our “lens of self” — on the world. You know, like a certain failed politician’s annoying habit of blaming sexism and misogyny for at least 80 percent of anything that goes south.