Matriarch : Barbara Bush and the Making of an American Dynasty
by Page, Susan







Introduction1(10)
One Six Brutal Months
11(17)
Two "The Fighting Pierces"
28(12)
Three The Football Star and the Campus Beauty
40(10)
Four Stuck in the Middle
50(13)
Five Love and War
63(16)
Six "The Street Cop"
79(14)
Seven How Hard Could It Be?
93(8)
Eight Darkness
101(8)
Nine "What Are We Going to Do About Bar?"
109(13)
Ten The Frost That Never Thawed
122(21)
Eleven Triumph
143(25)
Twelve First at Last
168(14)
Thirteen Grandma's House
182(14)
Fourteen The Reckoning
196(16)
Fifteen Detente
212(18)
Sixteen The Reluctant Campaign
230(19)
Seventeen Evicted
249(18)
Eighteen First Son
267(16)
Nineteen A Second First Lady Named Bush
283(12)
Twenty Dynasty
295(15)
Twenty-One "We've Had Enough Bushes"
310(8)
Twenty-Two "Hit in the Solarplex"
318(21)
Epilogue: Indispensable339(8)
Acknowledgments347(6)
Notes353(38)
Bibliography391(10)
Index401


Drawing on diary access and more than 100 interviews, a vibrant portrait of the former First Lady by the Washington Bureau chief of USA Today includes coverage of Barbara Bush's private struggles and remarkable political achievements. 100,000 first printing.





Susan Page is the award-winning Washington Bureau chief of USA Today, where she writes about politics and the White House. Susan has covered six White House administrations and ten presidential elections. She has interviewed the past nine presidents and reported from six continents and dozens of foreign countries. She has appeared as an analyst on ABC's This Week, CBS' Face the Nation, CNN's State of the Union, Fox News Sunday, NBC's Meet the Press, PBS' NewsHour, NPR's The Diane Rehm Show, and other TV and radio programs. She lives in Washington, D.C.





A deeply admiring biography of the former first lady. Veteran journalist Page, who is currently the Washington Bureau chief of USA Today and has covered six presidential administrations, had the good fortune to conduct five interviews with Barbara Bush (1925-2018) in her final months, and, as the author notes, "her mind was sharp to the end." Also sharp was Bush's tongue—so much so that even her own sons had to ask her to tone it down. Page begins with Bush's memorial service in Houston and then moves to her most wrenching experience—the loss of her daughter, 3, to leukemia in 1953—before settling into a steady chronology of her revered subject. The author notes that Barbara Pierce (not yet Bush) had a difficult relationship with her own mother, who demeaned her for her appearance. She met her future husband at a country club party shortly after Pearl Harbor, and they married a few years later. Then they moved to Texas to start their lives—and successfully so. Page takes us through their campaigns, victor ies, losses, and disappointments. As the author notes, Bush assumed a traditional wife/homemaker/mother role while her husband made many of the decisions for the family. This choice did not endear her to feminists of the time. She would not criticize her husband (or, later, her sons) in public, though during the 1980 presidential campaign (her husband was running to be Reagan's vice president), she fell silent about her support for abortion rights, and, later, she was displeased with her son's entanglement in Iraq. The author also explains the Bushes' growing friendship with the Clintons. Opponents of Donald Trump have an ally in Barbara Bush, who disliked him long before he disparaged her son Jeb in the 2016 primaries. In a late interview, she also expressed unhappiness about the current course and priorities of the GOP. A mostly sweet biography with occasional small drops of none-too-bitter acid. Copyright Kirkus 2019 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.






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