Ten Minutes from Normal

Version: Unabridged
Author: Karen Hughes
Narrator: Karen Hughes , Robert Hughes
Genres: Biography & Memoir
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Published In: March 2004
# of Units: 8 CDs
Length: 9 hours
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"The rule of thumb in any White House is that nobody is indispensable except the president," said "The New York Times," "but Karen Hughes has come as close to that description as any recent presidential aide." Karen Hughes has worked beside President George W. Bush since, as she says, "the motorcade was only one car and he was sometimes the one driving it." As counselor to the president, she brought the working mom s perspective to the White House, often asking of President Bush s policies, "What does this mean for the average person?"

Yet the move from Texas to Washington was hard on her family, and in a controversial, headline-making decision that reverberated across America, she summoned the courage to say, "Mr. President, I love you, but I need to move my family home to Texas." There, Hughes continues to advise the president, where the kitchen wall calendar marks the State of the Union message side by side with her son s orthodontist appointments.

Listening to "Ten Minutes from Normal" the title comes from the campaign trail one is instantly absorbed in what it s like to be a "normal" person who goes to work at the White House as a part of the president s inner circle. Told in Karen Hughes s disarmingly down-to-earth, warm, often funny, and frank voice, the audiobook is a remarkable blend of an ordinary woman s life, with all its compromises and everyday decisions, and a keenly insightful look at American politics and America s forty-third president.

This is an audiobook for the legions of women and men everywhere who are seeking new inspiration for how to reorder their priorities and achieve balance in their lives. Most important, in a post-9/11 world, Hughes redefines the very notion of what is "normal" as something special and precious, never to be taken for granted in America again.

Reviews (5)

Ten Minutes from Normal

Written by Jody Olson from Boise, ID on November 12th, 2007

  • Book Rating: 3/5

Great insight on the President and this presidency. Don't look for any balanced analysis. Ms. Hughes is a highly successful advocate, particularly message builder. But the message defaming John McCain's military record or other failures are not hers. She has God on her side.

Ten Minutes from normal

Written by Judie on January 10th, 2007

  • Book Rating: 4/5

OK, Well written, insighteful but spent needless time apologizing for not staying at home with her family. Some CD's were inauduble in places and would skip.

10 Min from Normal

Written by Danny Wester on September 6th, 2006

  • Book Rating: 5/5

This was an excellent book written by a really smart individual. I learned a lot.

Ten minutes from Normal

Written by Anonymous from Eldersburg, MD on January 31st, 2005

  • Book Rating: 5/5

I found this book to be well done and very insightful into the campaign process involved in the presidential race. I was moved to tears as I heard described how President Bush responded to the events of that tragic day, September 11th. This was a story well told. I was sad to see that I had reached the end of the story. I hope that Ms. Hughes writes about the rest of the term of President Bush to continue our look at the work of a great leader. It was truly a wonderfully done story and I appreciate the frankness and openness with which Ms. Hughes relates the events.

Recommended to me by my doctor

Written by Anonymous from Carrollton, TX on January 12th, 2005

  • Book Rating: 5/5

A wonderful retrospective of Karen's career and homelife. As she went over events of the campaign trail, I remembered the incidents and how the media portrayed them. It is interesting to compare that rememberance tempered with time gone by. Do you recall the Texas governor and the governor-elect hunting dove on the opening day of the season? Bush shot a killdee, a protected species. The media was there to cover it. Karen's son reads sections pertaining to his perspective. It made me appreciate the dedication and sacrifice all leaders make to be of service to our country. All in all, the book involved me on an intellectual and emotional level.

Author Details

Author Details

Hughes, Karen

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.