The Secretary of State's Legacy Project has released biographies of Slade Gorton, Booth Gardner and John Spellman.
Cecil Andrus has a really good biography. "Fire at Eden's Gate" about McCall is better. But, the Andrus one is really good.
Scoop and Maggy cast a longer shadow in Washington, sure. McCall is probably the most inspiring Cascadian politicians. But, at least in terms of 20th century executives in Washington State, none is more powerful and interesting that Dan Evans.
And, there is no biography. Hell, even Nancy Evans had a full oral history.
Dan Evans is a totem in our politics. A "Dan Evans" Republican or a "Dan Evans" anything is the symbol of a rational, friendly to the environment, good for business politician. Evans served three terms and has been the only governor to serve three consecutively.
Biographies are oftentimes the best history. People moving through history, changing the context around them. It can be pretty good reading. And, arguably, no single governor has guided Washington through more interesting times that Evans.
So, why no Evans book?
UPDATE 7/17/14 12:43 p.m.: Apparently Evans has been working for decades on an autobiography (thanks Deb Ross). From the Nancy Evans oral history:
...the week before Scoop died Dan had called the chair of the Evergreen trustees, Thelma Jackson, because he wanted to write this autobiography he’s been working on for so long. He had actually started doing some research, and started organizing the governor’s years, and going back into his own childhood – those sort of things. So he had gott en that far, but not really doing research like he is now. So he asked for an appointment with her. And he was going to tell her that he would work unti l the following June, but then he wanted to leave Evergreen. He wanted to write his book and then do something else. He didn’t know what – just something else.I'll be honest though. What I want isn't what I want. What makes a book like Fire at Edens Gate so good isn't just that it tells you the facts of a politicians life, but that it carries that life through the broader context of our communities and does it honestly. More honestly than could be done for an authorized biography (Shelby Scates on Magnuson or even John Hughes on Gardner) and much more honest than the subject can do on themselves.
It is great Evans is working on his autobiography. I want someone else to take a crack at it too.