Mostly Good and Competent Men, written by the late journalist and historian Robert P. Howard chronologically describes the strengths, weaknesses, and foibles of the governors of Illinois and the resulting successes and failures of their administrations. In a succinct readable style, Howard links together biography, politics, and history in his review of each of the thirty-seven governors who served during the 170 years from 1818 to 1988. This book sheds light on the personalities and events that contributed to the shaping of modern Illinois. The author’s journalistic writing style makes the story of Illinois’ governors informative and easy to read while on the train or over lunch. It’s a book that you can learn a lot by reading a little bit at a time.