Robin Gerber, . . Prentice Hall Press, $24 (256pp) ISBN 978-0-7352-0324-2

Gerber, a senior fellow at the University of Maryland's Academy of Leadership, idolizes Roosevelt as someone who overcame numerous hardships in her personal life. Using biographical details from different periods of the first lady's colorful history, from childhood to the last few months of her life, Gerber shows how Roosevelt's actions are still relevant and can provide inspiration for women today. Although it feels forced at times, this approach works. For example, in the chapter on finding your "leadership passion," Gerber says, "Your values have taken time to develop. They're based on your family background, religion, relationships and experiences and they are a part of you. But unless your values have been tested they may not be apparent to you." She then goes on to explain how Roosevelt didn't recognize her own values after spending many years listening to her grandmother and her husband. But when she began speaking out against political injustices, she grew more comfortable with her own beliefs. Each chapter ends with key principles ("Eleanor's Way"); some of these points are useful, but others are tired (e.g., "Follow your authentic instincts" or "Be bold and principled in implementing your vision"). Despite these flaws, Gerber's work provides a thought-provoking look at a first lady with a unique style. (Oct. 11)

Forecast:Warner is publishing David B. Roosevelt's Grandmère: A Personal History of Eleanor Roosevelt in October, which probably will help Gerber's sales.