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Ten Minutes from Normal Paperback – Bargain Price, December 28, 2004

3 out of 5 stars 128 customer reviews

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Paperback, Bargain Price, December 28, 2004
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Hughes, who surprised the political world by leaving her post as counselor to President Bush in July 2002, to pursue a more normal family life in Texas, here offers a relentlessly upbeat account of life as Bush’s chief communications strategist. Hughes begins by detailing her upbringing as an army brat, her career as a TV reporter in Texas and her entry into politics as a press officer for the 1984 Reagan presidential campaign. The heart of the story is her relationship with Bush ("my boss"), whom she has served since his 1994 campaign for governor of Texas. Hughes praises Bush’s "laser-like" mind, humble spirit and moral courage; she also praises almost everyone else in the administration, including political strategist Karl Rove, with whom she was reported to have frequently sparred. And not surprisingly for a famously disciplined, on-message spokesperson, she directs her most pointed barbs at those who leak information to the press. While Hughes doesn’t offer a balanced take on Bush and company, then, she does offer something equally tantalizing—a deep insider’s take on what it is like to work at the side of the most powerful man in the world. She also provides Bush fans with a well-crafted, robust paean to the president. And both these reasons are why this book has found a place on major national bestseller lists.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Karen Hughes served as counselor to the president, was one of three people who ran his presidential campaign and worked as his communications director during his six years as governor of Texas. She is an elder and longtime Sunday-school teacher in the Presbyterian church. Mrs. Hughes lives with her husband and son in Austin, Texas, where she continues to advise President Bush from her home. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 346 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books (December 28, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0143034979
  • ASIN: B000BSFQSM
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.9 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (128 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,353,882 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Karen Hughes is an advisor and personal friend of the President. This book presents a postive view of the president and the White House policies and processes. Duh.
But that is not primarily what this book is about. This book is presents a relatively "normal" professional working mom who finds herself in an important role in the innermost circles of the Presidential Power. She describes what that experience is like, and most importantly the conflict between that appeal to the intensity and importance of that power and her role as a mother and spouse.
The book provides some limited insight (almost certainly the negative filtered away) of decision processes of the President, gives some insights into how Political PR (should) work, and confirmation that a number of the President's close advisor's draw heavily upon their Christian faith.
The book gives some insights into the current President. He is has tremendous discipline, he apparently is always on time or early...for those of you who interact with executives who run businesses and/or organizations know how rare this is--as the imporance of issues that CEO's deal with often mean subordinates learn to wait. He is either "simple-minded" lacking in-depth understanding or cuts immediately to the core of the issue, depending on your view. He does tend to see decisions as right and wrong (it's not just Karl Rove pandering to the hard-core right).
But again, those insights are sidebars to main theme of the book--a mom wrestlhing with the consuming requirements of very intense work environment versus desire to invest in one's family.
The book is am enjoyable read and a thought provoking book for those of us with consuming worklife and a family.
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Format: Paperback
I think somewhere back in the misty recesses of history there have been a few times when Republicans and Democrats somehow laid aside their nasty animosities and worked together for some valuable compromises. I think on some very rare occasions, Reps and Dems have worked together because they knew they had to. I even think there have been a few cases in which there was deep, abiding respect between particular members of opposing parties. I'm tempted to think maybe that sentiment has died for good when I read many of these reviews. Could they be more rude and mean-spirited? Maybe, but not a whole lot. Kids, Bush was wrong on some issues and right on others, just like the rest of us human creatures...just like every Democrat who has ever served. Ease up a little.
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Format: Hardcover
It's really a shame that Ms. Hughes did not offer more insight into "her boss" and the inner workings of her political world. Instead, the book is primarily p.r. spin. While that was her job when working for Bush...one would think she would take a more in depth look once she left the White House. But, she could not get past her P.R. role...here is one p.r. person who really did believe her own press releases. A sad disappointment.
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Format: Audio Cassette
I really enjoyed this book. It gives a good insight into a busy life of a politician..

BEAWERE, Karen Hughes is a friend and a supporter of President Bush, so if you lack respect for the president you won't rate this book very high!
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Format: Hardcover
This book is a delightfully syrupy love letter to the "real man" Karen Hughes always wanted to be. She graciously shows us the George W. Bush that the liberal media just won't let us see.
He's very compassionate ("If my dog Barney was a real person, I'd give him a helluva big tax cut!") He's intellectually curious ("Do you know where they put my coloring book?") He's unfailingly polite ("Would you please ask the Vice President if I could run the country for a little while?")
"Ten Minutes From Normal" is also chock full of insider name dropping ("As Condi Rice said to me. . ." or "As I once told Pervez Musharef. . ." or "As Konrad Adenauer once whispered in my ear . . ."). Oddly, many of the names would almost certainly be mysterious to the current resident of the Oval Office.
Karen Hughes' stark candor about the object of her affection begs the question: Where is the righteous indignation from White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan about opportunistic White House insiders who write books about their former boss?
The author, who constantly reminds us of what a devoted mother she is, sets the worst possible example for her children by fabricating lies for a living. Karen Hughes is such a talented weaver of contemporary myth that she makes Edith Hamilton look like a slacker.
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Format: Hardcover
Whoa. Karen Hughes has her own meaning of Normal and she comes off as a happy, well-adjusted woman. Good for her. I liked her honesty in telling her story and feel the writing isn't bad. It's not good--but it's not bad. One expects more from such a self-proclaimed successful former journalist and contributing speech writer for a god.
In terms of a good read? Don't waste your time. This book has a single dimension: Unfailing praise for "her boss," George W. Bush. She's like a groupie--or like Courtney Cox when she got pulled on stage during a Bruce Springsteen concert--thrust into the limelight and wondering how it all happened to her.
It is among the most boring and self-aggrandizing memoirs I've ever read. Glad I only borrowed it from a friend. My apologies to the author. I wanted to like it.
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