New York Times bestselling author and Pulitzer Prize recipient Jon Meacham will come to Texas A&M University to launch his latest book “Destiny and Power: The American Odyssey of George Herbert Walker Bush” on November 9. Hosted by the George Bush Presidential Library Foundation, the award-winning author of several presidential biographies will speak at 6pm at the Annenberg Presidential Conference Center. The book will be released nationwide the following day.
“We are pleased that Jon Meacham will be the third speaker in the George Bush Distinguished Authors Series,” said Fred McClure, CEO of the George Bush Foundation. Previous authors in series include President George W. Bush and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates.
“A surprising portrait of an intensely private man who led the nation through tumultuous times,” a Random House spokesperson says in describing the book, adding, “from the Oval Office to Camp David, from his study in the private quarters of the White House to Air Force One, from the fall of the Berlin Wall to the first Gulf War to the end of communism, Destiny and Power charts the thoughts, decisions and emotions of a man who was, like the nation he led, at once noble and flawed.”
Historian Doris Kearns Goodwin notes: “What a spectacular and moving portrait this is – not only of a remarkably classy man but of the era that shaped him! It is hard to imagine a biographer more fitted than Jon Meacham to write what will surely be the definitive work on George Herbert Walker Bush.”
Calling the book a “timely and intimate biography” and a “welcome reminder of this modest president’s call to service,” newscaster Tom Brokaw adds, “Here you’ll meet a man of patrician manners, war time heroics, Texas assimilation, party and personal loyalty with a refined sense of power that carried him into history. Meet the George Bush you didn’t know.”
Other reviewers called the book “astonishing” and “riveting.” Michael Beschloss of the New York Times said, “President Bush used to say that he could never quite convey his ‘heartbeat’ to Americans. Now, using a treasure of heretofore-unseen diaries and other documents, as well as his own detailed interviews, Meacham takes us behind closed doors to show us what this sometimes-misunderstood leader was really like.”
Meacham received the Pulitzer Prize for his 2008 biography of Andrew Jackson, American Lion. An executive editor at Random House, he is also the author of the New York Times bestsellers Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power, American Gospel, and Franklin and Winston. Meacham, who teaches at Vanderbilt University and at The University of the South, is a fellow of the Society of American Historians. He lives in Nashville and in Sewanee with his wife and children.