Book Review: The Residence: Inside the private world of the White House

The Residence cover

If you get a chance over the Summer, have a read of Kate Andersen Brower’s book detailing the history and lives of the people who look after the first families at the White House. Find out about their relationships with the various occupants of the biggest goldfish bowl on the planet.  From the Roosevelts to the Obamas, find out about the details of domestic life and the varying relationships between staff and residents.

It is a little biased towards the Republicans and if you know a lot about US politics, there are no new sensational revelations, but it is a fascinating read nonetheless. My emotions went from sympathy for the Clintons and Obamas to annoyance with Lyndon Johnson’s obsession with his shower.  You feel the shock and fear around the Kennedy assassination and 9/11. How does it feel when you realise that your workplace could be the next target – especially when you leave some of your colleagues behind.

The legacy of slavery and racial discrimination until relatively recently is also laid bare. Michelle Obama, in her convention speech, referred to the impact of waking up in a house every morning that was built by slaves.

If you are a US politics obsessive, you really need to read this one.

You can buy this book here amongst many places on the internet.

 

 

* Caron Lindsay is Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings

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One Comment

  • Richard Underhill 21st Aug '16 - 1:23pm

    Bill Clinton writes about a department where everything is refused, applications for pardons, reviewed.
    Mo Farah had trouble at US Customs and Immigration
    “In 2012–2013, Farah intimated that he had been stopped a number of times by U.S. Customs officials under suspicion of being a terrorist, which he attributed to confusion between his full name “Mohamed” and a computerized check-in process. On one occasion after the 2012 Olympics, he asserted that he had attempted to prove his identity by showing his Olympic gold medals to customs officials, but that this was not accepted.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mo_Farah

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