Randall Wood, author, engineer, and teacher, has lived in Asia, Africa, and Latin America for most of his adult life, working in engineering, construction, agronomy, diplomacy, and teaching. Much of the inspiration for this book came from personal experience and observation. He writes, "Time and time again, when the media would report some new political atrocity, I would mutter, 'Well, that's a move straight out of the Dictator's Handbook.' If I said to myself, `Next, the president will insist on constitutional reform,' I was too frequently right. Finally, I began to wonder if there truly was some sort of Handbook these political clowns were using to organize their governments and plot their next moves. And now, finally, there is." Writing this book has been a sort of personal catharsis. He is the author of two other books and several technical manuals. His website is http://www.therandymon.com. Carmine DeLuca, writer and history enthusiast, has long cultivated an interest in the authoritarians of every stripe. In part this fascination stems from his personal life -- a Bonapartist father, an aunt named after the Battle of Adowa, and a grandfather and great uncle in Mussolini's army. Two decades of reading and thinking on the historical significance of ``great'' men plus a fantastic library of books on the Romans, Fascists, Napoleon, Greeks, and beyond have prepared him for the writing of this book.