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Author: Jean Edward Smith

Pages: 832

Edition: Hardcover

List Price: $35

Published: Jul, 2016

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

ISBN: 9781476741192

Highest rank: #16 on 9th, Jul 2016

First entered: 9th, Jul 2016

Number of weeks: 1

Book Summary

Distinguished presidential biographer Jean Edward Smith offers a critical yet fair biography of George W. Bush, showing how he ignored his advisors to make key decisions himself—most disastrously in invading Iraq—and how these decisions were often driven by the President’s deep religious faith.

George W. Bush, the forty-third president of the United States, almost singlehandedly decided to invade Iraq. It was possibly the worst foreign-policy decision ever made by a president. The consequences dominated the Bush Administration and still haunt us today.

In Bush, “America’s greatest living biographer” (George Will), Jean Edward Smith, demonstrates that it was not Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, or Condoleezza Rice, but President Bush himself who took personal control of foreign policy. Bush drew on his deep religious conviction that important foreign-policy decisions were simply a matter of good versus evil. Domestically, he overreacted to 9/11 and endangered Americans’ civil liberties.

Smith explains that it wasn’t until the financial crisis of 2008 that Bush finally accepted expert advice, something that the “Decider,” as Bush called himself, had previously been unwilling to do. As a result, he authorized decisions that saved the economy from possible collapse, even though some of those decisions violated Bush’s own political philosophy.

Bush is a comprehensive evaluation of the Bush presidency—including Guantanamo, Katrina, No Child Left Behind, and other important topics—that will surely surprise many readers. Controversial, incisive, and compelling, it is thoroughly researched and sure to add to the debate over Bush’s presidential legacy.


Jean Edward Smith

Name: Jean Edward Smith

Hometown: Washington, D.C.

Born: Oct, 1932

About the author:

Currently he is the John Marshall Professor of Political Science at Marshall University and professor emeritus at the University of Toronto after having served as professor of political economy there for thirty-five years. Smith also currently serves as professor of history and government at Ashland University.

A graduate of McKinley High School in Washington, D.C., Smith received an A.B. from Princeton University in 1954. While attending Princeton, Smith was mentored under law professor and political scientist William M. Beaney. Professor Beaney's American Constitutional Law: Introductory Essays & Selected Cases, became a standard text and was widely used in university constitutional law classes for several years. Serving in the military from 1954-1961, he rose from the rank of Second Lieutenant to Captain (RA) US Army (Artillery). Smith served in West Berlin and Dachau, Germany. In 1964, he obtained a Ph.D. from the Department of Public Law and Government of Columbia University. Smith began his teaching career as assistant professor of government at Dartmouth College, a post he held from 1963 until 1965. He then became a professor of political economy at the University of Toronto in 1965 until his retirement in 1999. Professor Smith also served as visiting professor at several universities during his tenure at the University of Toronto and after his retirement including the Freie Universität in Berlin, Georgetown University[2], the University of Virginia’s Woodrow Wilson Department of Government and Foreign Affairs, and the University of California at San Diego.

Smith is the author of numerous books and has been called (by George Will), "Today's foremost biographer of formidable figures in American history."

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