George W. Bush, author

The former president reportedly got a $7 million deal to write a book about some of his toughest decisions.

Alex Koppelman
March 19, 2009 6:25PM (UTC)

If you've been holding your breath waiting for former President Bush to write a book, good news: You can exhale now. Bush has signed a book deal with Crown for what's rumored to be a $7 million advance.

The book won't be a tell-all, or even a memoir of any kind. Instead, befitting someone who famously dubbed himself "The Decider," it "will focus exclusively on approximately a dozen of the most interesting and important decisions in the former President’s personal and political life," according to a press release. The release details what will be covered in the book:


Mr. Bush will write candidly about, among other topics, his decision to run for the presidency; how he chose his closest advisors, including Dick Cheney, Karl Rove, and Condoleezza Rice; the terrorist attacks of 9/11; the decisions to send American troops to Afghanistan and Iraq; the response to Hurricane Katrina; his commitment to fight AIDS around the world; the formation of his stem cell research policy; his relationships with his father, mother, siblings, and wife; his decision to quit drinking; and how he found faith.

And, if you're wondering, the release also says Bush "will write the book himself, with the assistance of researchers."

While a $7 million advance sounds pretty damn good -- I, for one, wouldn't turn up my nose -- Gawker points out that it's low for a book like this. It's $5 million less than Bill Clinton got for his memoir, $1 million less than Hillary Clinton got for hers and even $2 million less than former British Prime Minister Tony Blair.

One other interesting point, from the "It's a small Beltway after all" file: The deal was brokered for Bush by Robert Barnett, who also happens to be President Obama's literary agent.

Alex Koppelman

Alex Koppelman is a staff writer for Salon.

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George W. Bush War Room


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