I wrote the first version of John McCain during the election campaign of 2008. At the same time, I was writing a biography of the Democratic candidate for president, Barack Obama. My agreement with Simon & Schuster was that the winner's story would be published, and so Barack Obama: Our 44th President came out at the end of 2008. As for my biography of McCain, I reluctantly filed it in Unpublished Books.
Ten years later I had a great idea: This was the year that the story of John McCain, an old-fashioned American hero, should be published.