Reflections: Life After the White House

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Scribner, 2003 - Biography & Autobiography - 420 pages
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"There is a myth in the United States -- you've heard it many times. It says that all American mothers hope that their child will grow up to be President of the United States. In my case that certainly is a myth. I never dreamed that any of ours would; there were days when I hoped they'd just grow up!...But on January 20, 2001...there we were sitting on the west side of the United States Capitol, waiting for our son George W. to be sworn in as the forty-third President of the United States of America." -- from the Prologue

This inspiring follow-up to Barbara Bush's number one bestselling memoir covers the momentous eight years between President George H. W. Bush's leaving office and President George W. Bush's inauguration.

Not since Abigail Adams has one woman been both the wife and mother to a president. Barbara Bush's prominent place in American history is matched by her extraordinary popularity: Republicans and Democrats alike appreciate her wit, her compassion, and her devotion to her family. Dignified, loyal, and unpretentious, Barbara Bush defied skeptics to become one of the most admired first ladies in history; she remains a beloved public figure today.

Picking up where Barbara Bush: A Memoir left off, Reflections begins with the inauguration of her son, President George W. Bush, in January 2001, and then flashes back eight years to President Clinton's inauguration, when she and her husband President George H. W. Bush were leaving the White House. Drawing on excerpts from her diary, Mrs. Bush chronologically takes us through this time in her life, devoting one chapter to each year. She reveals her and her husband's inner lives through sometimes touching and often hilarious stories about their extensive travels, their hobbies, and their charity work. She discusses her experiences on the campaign trail with her sons, and relates her continuing interactions with VIPs from around the world. Mrs. Bush also touches on more controversial issues, such as her husband's resignation from the NRA, the caning of an American student in Singapore, and the hypocrisy of certain politicians. The extraordinary amount of love she feels for her family and the pride she takes in their many achievements is always clear, particularly when she writes of her relationships with her five children and fourteen grandchildren. In the epilogue, she reflects on the experience of having a president for a son and discusses the family's reactions to September 11, 2001, and its aftermath.

Reflections will delight Barbara Bush's millions of admirers with the former first lady's warmth and wit, as well as with candid revelations and anecdotes from the past decade of a full and fascinating life.

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Reflections: Life After the White House

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

How listeners respond to this book will probably depend on several factors, including whether or not they were fans of Bush's husband or of her son. Only one other woman in American history has ... Read full review

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User Review  - suefitz1 - LibraryThing

What a wonderful book talking about the Bush family, but mostly how it is seen through Barbara Bush's eyes. I wished the book hadn't ended. Read full review


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About the author (2003)

Barbara Bush was born in Rye, New York, and married George H. W. Bush in 1945. She was First Lady of the United States from 1989 to 1993. She has five children, including President George W. Bush and Florida Governor Jeb Bush, and is the founder of The Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy.

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