LAURA: America's First Lady, First Mother

Antonia Felix, Author . Adams Media $19.95 (272p) ISBN 978-1-58062-659-0

A Texas journalist once remarked that Laura Bush wasn't exactly a hot media topic—there were no skeletons in her closet. But a lack of scandal isn't the only reason there's no drama in Felix's (Christine Todd Whitman) warm and fuzzy biography of the First Lady. Readers won't find much new information, either. Felix isn't interested in analysis, criticism or original and unbiased reportage—her star source (among the few she has interviewed) is Jenna Welch, Laura's mother—as much as she is in painting a pretty, soft-focus picture of the woman whose "media appearances [post-Sept. 11] sent a warm, personal, and utterly sincere message to parents, teachers, and children throughout the country, helping them cope with pain that words cannot describe." In other words, Laura Bush, teacher, librarian, wife and mother of two; is now America's mom. Before that, she was a Girl Scout; she sang in the church choir; she was devoted to books and reading; and she experienced one tragedy—a friend was killed when Laura drove through a stop sign. Though George W. lived in the same Texas town and later in the same apartment complex in Houston, they didn't meet until she was 30, in 1977, at a dinner party held by a mutual friend. While George was a rowdy partier, Laura was a quiet elementary school teacher who went to bed early on school nights. This glowing account of these events and Laura's subsequent journey to the White House is for readers who enjoy a story short on depth and long on feel-good tidbits. (Mar.)

Reviewed on: 01/21/2002
Release date: 03/01/2002
Genre: Nonfiction
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