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Barbara Bush: A Memoir

3.88 of 5 stars 3.88  ·  rating details  ·  860 ratings  ·  86 reviews
Barbara Bush endures as one of America's most popular First Ladies. She has won worldwide acclaim for her wit, compassion, and candor as both a presidential wife and mother. In this #1 New York Times bestselling memoir, Mrs. Bush offers a heartfelt portrait of her life in and out of the White House, from her small-town schoolgirl days in Rye, New York, to her fateful union ...more
Paperback, 592 pages
Published October 28th 2003 by Scribner (first published 1994)
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Naomi
I loved this book and have repeatedly recommended it. I believe this book is 600 pages long and I read it in less than 3 days because I could not put it down. Hands down, BB is my favorite first lady of all time. She never ceases to crack me up with her unpretentious, sarcastic wit that even has me blushing on occasions and asking if she really just said that! I was not as crazy with the follow-up to this book so make sure to get the right book as the covers are very similiar.
Michelle
I had a very hard time getting through this book and yet there were parts of it that I thoroughly enjoyed reading; in particular the behind the scenes personal relationships with all the foreign ambassadors, pranks and private jokes, real life in the White House etc. The e-version of my book was chocked full of errors so that in itself was hard to ignore. How does this happen? Doesn't someone check these things? My expectations for the book were to "get the know" the former First Lady and that w ...more
Bobbie
This is a fun, rollicking read. Barbara Bush was very well-suited to the job of first lady. She is blessed with charm, fortitude, the ability to enjoy (or at least pretend to enjoy) attending one function after another, and a seemingly cast-iron stomach. She also has a wonderful sense of humor, which makes the book a joy to read. Looking for the inside story? Barbara Bush tells it like it is, and doesn't clean up her stories to protect the sensibilities of anyone, whether they be a former head o ...more
Verona
I love Barbara Bush, her style, her personality, her mothering, her stand on things she believes in, her love of family and her husband, her loyalty, and more! I supported her husband as our president, and later her son as our president. I believe she had great influence on these men in her life and helped them to be the great leaders and great in personal values that they were. I enjoyed reading about her in this book. It just helped me admire her more.
Margaret
Every time I picked up this book, it was like kicking off my shoes, curling up in an armchair with a cup of tea and chatting with Mrs. Bush just as if she were in my living room. I found her to be honest, witty, caring, and "real".

Faith, family, friends. That's what Mrs. Bush believes in and that comes across in every incident that she relates from her times as Vice Presidents' wife and then First Lady. Her diary entries were fascinating and kept my head spinning with all the events she attended
...more
Gophergirl58
Where hasn't this lady been? What has surprised me most in reading former First Lady Barbara Bush's memoir is how extensively she traveled, both with and without her husband during their political years. I did end up with a slightly different view of Mrs. Bush after reading this, and really tired of her editor still allowing so many times of the words "marvelous," "lovely," and "glorious" as it was tiring and I do not wish to hear these words for awhile now, LOL. But talk about President George ...more
Patriciadubray
I fell in love with this woman and love who she is and what she represents. A great read.
Kendra Fletcher
What a remarkable woman.
Christopher Wensley
I only have a few memories of Barbara Bush, all of them good, but it is funny how someone who once so dominated the headlines can disappear with nary a word later in life. Having found the time to read her memoir, it was a fun experience to step into the Bush 41 White House for a few days and meet a real terrific woman.
Barbara Bush: A Memoir is one of the best edited political autobiographies, it avoids the usually pratfalls that doom many a reader. The auto-bio always seems to start off page 1
...more
Jeff
She's an excellent writer and included a good mix of information about her own life along with her husband and family. that was a relief as I wondered if it would be all about George Bush, but she included a lot of commentary from her perspective as well.

especially informative was the behind the scenes info about life as a VP or President.

With this book, she confirmed her status as the best First Lady of the last 40 years (or longer).
Connie
Barbara started her preface by stating that she had led a life of privilege and no one has ever had a better life. Seriously, it made me want to gag and I thought about not even reading the book. But I am so glad I decided to continue on. She truly made the best of everything that life dealt to her and made her own life of privilege.

I loved reading about her and George in their early years of marriage, and wish there would have been more of it.

She is such a devoted wife and mother. I had no ide
...more
Elijah Christopher
The only reason I picked up this book was because I liked the unusual shade of blue it portrays, I didn't care to read the title. Bush is good at documenting, but she can't write. This book was painful to get through, mostly because I could care less about hearing about an average life. I gave this book two stars because I found a quote in it that I liked. Also, Bush appears to be a moral person who cares for her husband and family. That is an essential aspect that is being thrown away in this d ...more
Kim
Barbara Bush is a fun, engaging, interesting, poignant, self-effacing writer. I learned a lot about the Bush dynasty through her book; which is an intriguing subject by itself. It was fun to read about their lives as seen through her eyes. After reading this I ended up listening to it as an audio book, which is read by the author. I think I enjoyed it more! It was wonderful to listen to her tell her own stories. Whether you are Republican or Democrat, liberal or conservative, most can agree that ...more
Hope
This book shows why B.B. is one of America's favorite first ladies: she's unpretentious and "real," yet gracious too. (even when talking about political enemies)

Torie
Barbara Bush is a fascinating woman. You can not know this about her until you read her words with your own eyes.
Paula Girard
I love the perspective of presidential wives and I LOVE Barbara.
Clara
I remember watching my mom read this book when I was five or six. I remember watching my sister read it when I was 11 or 12. When we picked it up at Goodwill this month, I decided that it was finally my turn to read it. It was an extremely enjoyable book and it was very good for me to read it during this election year, because it reminds me that every person involved in politics is just that...a person. A very timely reminder. I also appreciated how much Mrs. Bush expressed her deep love and res ...more
Belinda Harmon
Too much detail to be interesting book.
Jane Cook
Candid biography, an enjoyable read.
Elizabeth
I really enjoyed this book. Mrs Bush is an engaging and charming author. She describes a fascinating life and I felt that she displayed grace and depth of character throughout many of the challenges that she faced, while still remaining a human-ness. I think this book would have been even more interesting if I had a clearer recollection of the world events it talked about. I might read another one of her books, but I think at this point I would be even more interested in reading books about othe ...more
Margen
It was interesting.
Maureen
A statement Barbara Bush makes in the beginning of her memoir is "you can like it or not. I have chosen to like it". A credo she developed observing her mother, who apparently, was not a content woman. That credo resonates throughout the book. Barbara appears to take any situation and make the best out of it.

I found this to be interesting, particularly George and Barbara's early years together. They lived in some very modest places; in some sharing a bath or kitchen with other couples!
Tabitha
I found a copy of this book at our favorite used book store signed by her and G. Bush senior and we went at the presidential election rally for GWB and could have has it signed but of course I did not bring it. So really I bought it b/c it was double signed and I could have had it triple signed being in Austin at the time and all...

After I read the book, she's an interesting lady with trials most have not had. I'm glad I read it and will possibly re-read it in the next 5 years.
Christy
"Look for the best, forget the rest." (in others) Loved the stories she told about raising her family and being in a political family.

Especially about her daughter Robin, who died of leukemia at 2 and GWB asking why all the women in the building wore their nightgowns during the daytime. (His dad was going to Yale after WWII and the only housing they could afford happened to be an apt. building of ill repute.) Good read that has stuck with me.
Marion S.
My O My what a fantastic lady, no wonder she has been voted one of the most popular 1st Ladies of all time. To get an insiders view of life in politics and more importantly to be the wife of the President of the United States, was amazing. She traveled with and entertained some of the most important people in modern history, but beyond that she managed to be a wonderful mother and grandmother with great affection for all. A very good read!
Kelly
Barbara Bush turned out to be different than I had imagined her. She really seemed to be the opposite in many ways than her husband. An extrovert, social and down to earth person who experienced some extraordinary events and people mostly in stride.
I'd recommend this book for anyone who is wanting a peek into the times and people from a mostly non-political view. If you're looking for political history, facts and data, this isn't for you.
Elissa
Wonderful read. I came away with an understanding of how much she has been through and how she was able to bear it all with such grace. It is no wonder that this woman has a spine of steel, unmatched common sense, a super sense of humor and a heart of gold. You will love her more after reading this...It is so well written that you will laugh, ponder, be angry and maybe even cry in the course of reading it.
Suzan
A very well written memoir my Barbara Bush (no ghost writer).
She writes about her growing up years, marriage to George, the death of their daughter, getting into politics, and being First Lady. She shared some great inside stories. She is a classy, down to earth lady, who promoted literacy while she was in the White House. Yeah!


Bradley
This book took me nearly a week to read. Whew. It is full of lots of fun facts about the Bush family I never knew. Barbara Bush seems to be a very loving woman who cares deeply for her family. I enjoyed the pictures that were in this book too. In summary, Barbara Bush is a nice person devoted to helping others. Very inspiring. =)
Nancy
first of all...I'm an independent

read this when I was active duty after briefly meeting first lady. Respected her then and more after reading it. She's a no nonsense type of gal who doesn't care what others think about her keeping her grey hair or what status she should hold. Very down to earth.
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the Goodreads database with this name.

Barbara Pierce Bush is the wife of the 41st President of the United States, George H. W. Bush, making her First Lady of the United States from 1989 to 1993. Preceding that, she was the Second Lady of the United States from 1981 to 1989 while her husband was Vice President to Ronald Reagan. She is the mother of U
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