Just Out

Should You Read Laura Bush's Book?

Is Laura Bush's new memoir, Spoken From The Heart, worth reading? The New York Times' sharp-eyed critic Michiko Kakutani says if you want the inside scoop on the Bush White House, look elsewhere. In it Kakutani finds "the sort of spin and canned platitudes common in political autobiographies." There's stuff for political junkies, like when the president's wife disses Democratic leaders for personal nastiness, but most of the memoir seems scrubbed to avoid making news. However, if you want to know what life was like for Bush growing up in Midland, Texas, the former first lady spins a tale with "enormous detail, lyricism, and feeling." Bush writes, “It was easy perhaps to be sad in Midland, sad from loss, sad from loneliness." In the end, according to Kakutani, Bush emerges as an isolated figure, who, though comforted by family, has spent a lifetime apart from the world.