The President’s Club

The Presidents Club
Nancy Gibbs
Michael Duffy

Before reading this book, I assumed the president’s club was more of a concept that a reality- a way for presidents past and present to connect, but not an official club. Turns out I was wrong.  It was founded by former presidents Truman and Hoover at the inauguration of Eisenhower. There is an official clubhouse, an allowance, and even a top-secret newsletter.
Men who have held the top office in this country are in a unique position to advise one another and influence politics even after they leave office. As presidents live longer, their time as ex-presidents becomes more of an opportunity for them. This book tells the stories of these men and the unique bond they share.

To be completely honest, I did not read all the pages in this book. There are just some presidents that are more interesting to me than others. The authors’ extensive research and produced a thick book packed with details. When the pages were about presidents from my grandparents era, I skimmed. When those details were about the presidents I remember in my lifetime (Bush Sr, Clinton, Bush Jr, Obama) I was fascinated. The post-office relationship of the two Bushes with Clinton has always kind of amazed me, given all the years of antagonism between them. But, as this book illustrates over and over, being an ex-president becomes more important than politics. The things presidents have in common vastly outweigh their differences.
You don’t have to be a history buff to enjoy this book. I learned a lot from it. But you might be a history buff if you read every page.