Lyndon Baines Johnson, Margaret Thatcher, Bill Clinton, Tony Blair, Barack Obama, Gordon Brown, Theresa May, and Donald Trump: each had different motivations, methods, and paths, but they all sought the highest office. And yet when they reached their goal, they often found that the power they had imagined was illusory. Their sweeping visions of reform faltered. They faced bureaucratic obstructions, but often the biggest obstruction was their own character. However, their personalities could help them as much as hurt them. David Runciman tackles the limitations of high office and how the personal histories of those who achieved the very pinnacles of power helped to define their successes and failures in office.