From Publishers Weekly
Completing a trilogy that includes Presidential Anecdotes and Presidential Campaigns, Boller "looks to the ladies" in entertaining stories and vignettes of presidents' wives from Martha Washington to Nancy Reagan. Each First Lady is accorded a thoughtful essay that fixes the historical moment of her residency in the White House; the accompanying anecdotes illuminate her special relationship to the country as well as her husband. We hear of Jefferson's profound grief on Martha's death, which put him "in a stupor of mind"; of Dolley Madison's unfortunate propensity to snuff-taking; of Teddy Roosevelt's wife, who thought he was "just the biggest of her children." Tales about presidential wives prior to the 20th century are not abundant because, as Boller points out, many were practically "invisible women," exerting their influence in the recesses of the White House by coping with husband and children. For the more public First Ladies of recent times, the author provides some fresh, even amusing, anecdotes in this lively popular history. 30,000 first printing; $50,000 ad/promo; author tour.
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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"For anyone interested in a snapshot view of the presidency, this anecdotal history of American presidential wives...is important to read--and certainly fun....Boller's anecdotes are fascinating and amusing."--Letitia Baldrige, The Washington Post Book World
"Boller excels at illuminating the pathos and tragedy that suffused the lives of other presidential wives."--The Chicago Tribune
"Boller's deep insight into [these women's] lives and personalities...[adds] new historical detail to White House folklore."--Los Angeles Times Book Review
"Boller has splendidly fulfilled his purpose of producing a fascinating...account of what it has meant for a woman to be the wife of a president....This collective history of presidential wives calls attention to their significance in the nation's history."--Journal of American History