Debriefing: An Intimate Portrait of the First Lady, Laura Bush by Ronald Kessler

Posted on October 20, 2008. Filed under: Books, Personal Reviews | Tags: , , , , , |

President Bush has an ever decreasing approval rating, and the public is all too aware of his slip-ups and overall hold of the English language. To put it plainly he seems like a goofball, and not very proper. The First Lady on the other hand always strikes me as very proper, traditional, soft-spoken and more of a background figure. Hilary Clinton was a very outspoken First Lady, but Laura Bush is more quiet, and to me she was much more mysterious. I felt that while the media is so centered on the President and his mistakes, no one focuses on his better half. This book was a great introduction to her life in a broad sense, I left the book truly feeling like ‘Laura’ was one of my Mother’s friends that I became friendly with. This biography is a brief overview of her life, and just starts to scratch the surface of the smiling woman always standing beside her President.

The book is a biography and starts from her roots in Midland Texas to her current residence in the White House. She is traditional in the sense that she is a good housewife, she is a wonderful entertainer, a good mother and she is smart. One of the main themes within the book is dispelling the rumor that she is comparable to a ‘Stepford Wife’, based on this book I do not think she is – she has a mind of her own and asserts herself when she cares to, and the author explains that she can not cook. She is a caring person and has many charities and ideas for helping people all over the world. What struck me was that she is almost a feminist, but her previous occupations were a teacher and librarian really are not very much apart of the movement. Her biggest concerns as First Lady are for education and women’s rights worldwide. She is behind many of the education, and arts/cultural campaigns run by the White House, and of course she is responsible for the National Book Festival. These are really great campaigns and while they may only have a minimal effect now, the benefits of education will benefit the future generations and generations to come. I think it is wonderful that the First Lady is so interested in education standards, it is truly the stepping-stones to the future.

The First Lady is clearly an avid reader, and it is interesting for the book to portray the variety of books that she enjoys reading. Furthermore, it is interesting to hear that she often recommends books to the President to help him and also to point out articles of interest to him. She is very well-read and versed in a matter of subjects. As a child it was pointed out that she was a good student, and a loyal friend, as an only child it was only implied that she was well behaved since her parents only had her.She has had a very full life, and seems to make everyone that is in her life feel as special as they are. 

The book as a whole was a light biography. One of the drawbacks was that the author seemed to be making up for what the President may lack by highlighting all of the positives of the First Lady. It was almost as though the author wanted the public to regard the President in a higher manner because she is really so wonderful. I do believe after reading this book that she is wonderful – smart, sensitive, caring and opinionated, I hope that at her age I have half of the grace and willpower to deal with adversity as she does. She is not from wealth, but certainly knows how to handle it in a dignified manner. This biography in no way changed my opinion of the President, or his cabinet, but it did help me understand the rest of the family, and the reasons why the family is still well-liked by many. Laura Bush is a fascinating subject, and she is truly an interesting person. This book is a great biography since it is short and precise. If you are  not a fan of the President you may want to pass this one up, because the author does seem to be highly fond of the current President and often gives excuses for wrongdoings or disliked policies. Overall, it is not a heavy read, perfect for someone who just wants to scratch the surface on Laura Bush’s life, this is not overtly detailed and was a great way to learn more about the First Lady.

Grade: A-

Advertisements

Make a Comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

One Response to “Debriefing: An Intimate Portrait of the First Lady, Laura Bush by Ronald Kessler”

RSS Feed for Allison’s Weblog Comments RSS Feed

[…] Debriefing: An Intimate Portrait of the First Lady, Laura Bush by … Hilary Clinton was a very outspoken First Lady, but Laura Bush is more quiet, and to me she was much more mysterious. I felt that while the media is so centered on the President and his mistakes, no one focuses on his better half. … […]


Where's The Comment Form?

Liked it here?
Why not try sites on the blogroll...

%d bloggers like this: