by Laura Bush
Memoir (May 2010)
Former First Lady Laura Bush writes about her life - as a child, a teenager, and wife of a President.
I saw Laura Bush speak a few weeks ago in St. Louis. Her sweet Southern accent and easy-going demeanor made her likeable. She took questions from the audience and was down to earth. When someone asked what she was reading, she said she just finished "My Name is Mary Sutter" and loved it. (She needs to become a book blogger and be our friend. She would fit right in.)
I started the book a few days later, and because I had just heard her speak, her Southern accent was fresh in my mind and I felt like she was reading to me.
I was surprised at how much she talked in her book about books and reading. That was probably my favorite part. She mentioned Stephen Ambrose, Mary Higgins Clark, Carol Higgins Clark, Alexander McCall Smith and the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series, and many others. She definitely knows her authors. And you know that she was a librarian, right? What I didn't know was that she initiated and helped organize the National Book Festival, which debuted in Washington, DC, on September 8, 2001.
Sadly, three days later, the world changed forever. She talks about what she was doing at the time of the terrorist attacks and what happened in the days and weeks after. A couple of times she and staff members had to go to the underground shelter of the White House due to terrorist false alarms.
I loved all the inside scoop. For instance, before a state dinner at Buckingham Palace (I think that's where it was), someone told her that for fun she should peek into the dining room to see what goes on in preparation for such a dinner. She did, and there walking on TOP of the enormous table were numerous staff in clean white socks, setting the table and using measuring tapes to measure the distance between each place setting. Isn't that crazy?
And I love what she says here in defense of her husband: I wondered if Barack Obama, who spent far more time attacking George than he did his opponent, John McCain, would want to amend his words once he discovered the reality of the White House and was himself confronted by the challenges and crises that hit a president every day, all day. It's so true. It's like I told my brother, who doesn't have kids and who used to give me advice on how to parent my son - it's easy to parent when you don't have kids! He agreed. And he backed off. lol
Besides books and reading and her time in the White House, former First Lady Bush discusses her passion for advocating for women's rights and women's health in Afghanistan and the Middle East, with which she still is involved.
Do I Recommend?
I bought my signed copy at the author event.