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1 Burnside Law- Biographies and Memoirs

The President's Counselor: The Rise to Power of Alberto Gonzales

by

The President's Counselor: The Rise to Power of Alberto Gonzales Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

The first and only biography of the most controversial u.s. Attorney general in recent memory.

In defiance of expectations, statistics, and stereotypes, Alberto Gonzales has risen to become one of the most powerful men in America. Gonzales has been the nexus for key policy points for the Bush administration, and holds inflammatory and very influential positions on issues that seize and polarize the nation — privacy, capital punishment, and torture.

Gonzales's unyielding loyalty to George W. Bush — during a time when to call his presidency controversial would be an understatement of massive proportions — is a fascinating study in the politics of ambition.

From his modest beginnings in Humble, Texas, to his stone-faced refusal to buckle under the pressure of dissenters, The President's Counselor provides never-seen insight into the man whose influence over a very powerful president in very pressing times will undoubtedly impact people here and abroad for years to come.

Review:

"Although a taciturn and reputedly uncharismatic man, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales rose from his beginnings in Humble, Tex., to become one of the most powerful men in America. In a biography that reads like a novel, Minutaglio traces the Mexican-American lawyer's dramatic route from poor son of an alcoholic father to the most trusted aide to President Bush. While he examines Gonzales's childhood and White House days, the majority of the book focuses on how Gonzales worked himself inside the Bush family's inner circle during the early days of George W. Bush's presidential campaign. Minutaglio, journalist and author of First Son: George W. Bush and the Bush Family Dynasty, draws an unbiased, lively portrait of Gonzales as one of Bush's most prized advisers, due to Gonzales's ability to sum up complex legal language in a few sentences and his willingness to interpret the law to fit the president's agenda. Minutaglio also explains how the timing was right for conservatives to have a Hispanic on their side. While the book is revealing about Gonzales's assimilation into Bush's white, moneyed Texas world, it offers few reactions from the Hispanic community, leaving readers to wonder what Gonzales's success means to those he left behind. 16 pages of photos." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"Although a taciturn and reputedly uncharismatic man, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales rose from his beginnings in Humble, Tex., to become one of the most powerful men in America. In a biography that reads like a novel, Minutaglio traces the Mexican-American lawyer's dramatic route from poor son of an alcoholic father to the most trusted aide to President Bush. While he examines Gonzales's childhood and White House days, the majority of the book focuses on how Gonzales worked himself inside the Bush family's inner circle during the early days of George W. Bush's presidential campaign. Minutaglio, journalist and author of First Son: George W. Bush and the Bush Family Dynasty, draws an unbiased, lively portrait of Gonzales as one of Bush's most prized advisers, due to Gonzales's ability to sum up complex legal language in a few sentences and his willingness to interpret the law to fit the president's agenda. Minutaglio also explains how the timing was right for conservatives to have a Hispanic on their side. While the book is revealing about Gonzales's assimilation into Bush's white, moneyed Texas world, it offers few reactions from the Hispanic community, leaving readers to wonder what Gonzales's success means to those he left behind. 16 pages of photos. (July)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"At times, Mr. Minutaglio goes beyond what he knows to put himself inside his subject's head in trying to explain what makes him tick. On the whole, though, it's as complete and as probing an account of Mr. Gonzales' career as is possible in light of his lack of cooperation with the author." Dallas Morning News

Review:

"Although Minutaglio's biography is adequately written, readers will get only an inkling of Gonzales' personality....This is the most disturbing element in Minutaglio's portrait. Gonzales comes across as a very ordinary man...despite his stand on torture." San Francisco Chronicle

Review:

"The chief usefulness of this book is in reminding the reader just how dependent Mr. Gonzales was on the patronage of Mr. Bush....And secondly, in showing in a very straightforward manner just how many secretive initiatives were taken in the weeks and months after 9/11 by a small group of administration lawyers." New York Times

Review:

"Bush apparently adores him, and indeed he may still be in the running for a Supreme Court seat. An eye-opening look at the personal politics behind the present administration." Kirkus Reviews

Book News Annotation:

Having conducted interviews with White House officials and staffers, school classmates, former Texas state officials, former teachers, corporate clients, critics, and others who have interacted with the sitting Attorney General, journalist Minutaglio has constructed a political biography of one of the central figures of the George W. Bush administration, a man who has played a central role in fashioning the new (il)legal regime of detention and interrogation of the so-called "War on Terror" and has pushed novel and, critics say, extreme theories of executive power. The narrative ends at the point Gonzalez left his position as the president's counselor and assumed the helm of the US Justice Department.
Annotation 2007 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Book News Annotation:

Having conducted interviews with White House officials and staffers, school classmates, former Texas state officials, former teachers, corporate clients, critics, and others who have interacted with the sitting Attorney General, journalist Minutaglio has constructed a political biography of one of the central figures of the George W. Bush administration, a man who has played a central role in fashioning the new (il)legal regime of detention and interrogation of the so-called "War on Terror" and has pushed novel and, critics say, extreme theories of executive power. The narrative ends at the point Gonzalez left his position as the president's counselor and assumed the helm of the US Justice Department. Annotation ©2007 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

About the Author

Minutaglio graduated from Columbia University in 1978, with a B.A. in history and an M.S. in Journalism. He has worked as a special writer for The Dallas Morning News since 1983.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780061119200
Subtitle:
The Rise to Power of Alberto Gonzales
Author:
Minutaglio, Bill
Author:
by Bill Minutaglio
Publisher:
Rayo
Subject:
Political
Subject:
Presidents
Subject:
Political consultants
Subject:
United States Politics and government.
Subject:
Presidents -- United States -- Staff.
Subject:
Biography-Political
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Hardcover
Publication Date:
20060703
Binding:
Hardback
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
spa
Illustrations:
Y
Pages:
368
Dimensions:
9 x 6 x 1.18626 in 22.64 oz

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The President's Counselor: The Rise to Power of Alberto Gonzales Used Hardcover
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Product details 368 pages Rayo - English 9780061119200 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Although a taciturn and reputedly uncharismatic man, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales rose from his beginnings in Humble, Tex., to become one of the most powerful men in America. In a biography that reads like a novel, Minutaglio traces the Mexican-American lawyer's dramatic route from poor son of an alcoholic father to the most trusted aide to President Bush. While he examines Gonzales's childhood and White House days, the majority of the book focuses on how Gonzales worked himself inside the Bush family's inner circle during the early days of George W. Bush's presidential campaign. Minutaglio, journalist and author of First Son: George W. Bush and the Bush Family Dynasty, draws an unbiased, lively portrait of Gonzales as one of Bush's most prized advisers, due to Gonzales's ability to sum up complex legal language in a few sentences and his willingness to interpret the law to fit the president's agenda. Minutaglio also explains how the timing was right for conservatives to have a Hispanic on their side. While the book is revealing about Gonzales's assimilation into Bush's white, moneyed Texas world, it offers few reactions from the Hispanic community, leaving readers to wonder what Gonzales's success means to those he left behind. 16 pages of photos." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Although a taciturn and reputedly uncharismatic man, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales rose from his beginnings in Humble, Tex., to become one of the most powerful men in America. In a biography that reads like a novel, Minutaglio traces the Mexican-American lawyer's dramatic route from poor son of an alcoholic father to the most trusted aide to President Bush. While he examines Gonzales's childhood and White House days, the majority of the book focuses on how Gonzales worked himself inside the Bush family's inner circle during the early days of George W. Bush's presidential campaign. Minutaglio, journalist and author of First Son: George W. Bush and the Bush Family Dynasty, draws an unbiased, lively portrait of Gonzales as one of Bush's most prized advisers, due to Gonzales's ability to sum up complex legal language in a few sentences and his willingness to interpret the law to fit the president's agenda. Minutaglio also explains how the timing was right for conservatives to have a Hispanic on their side. While the book is revealing about Gonzales's assimilation into Bush's white, moneyed Texas world, it offers few reactions from the Hispanic community, leaving readers to wonder what Gonzales's success means to those he left behind. 16 pages of photos. (July)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review" by , "At times, Mr. Minutaglio goes beyond what he knows to put himself inside his subject's head in trying to explain what makes him tick. On the whole, though, it's as complete and as probing an account of Mr. Gonzales' career as is possible in light of his lack of cooperation with the author."
"Review" by , "Although Minutaglio's biography is adequately written, readers will get only an inkling of Gonzales' personality....This is the most disturbing element in Minutaglio's portrait. Gonzales comes across as a very ordinary man...despite his stand on torture."
"Review" by , "The chief usefulness of this book is in reminding the reader just how dependent Mr. Gonzales was on the patronage of Mr. Bush....And secondly, in showing in a very straightforward manner just how many secretive initiatives were taken in the weeks and months after 9/11 by a small group of administration lawyers."
"Review" by , "Bush apparently adores him, and indeed he may still be in the running for a Supreme Court seat. An eye-opening look at the personal politics behind the present administration."
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