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A Different Drummer: My Thirty Years with Ronald Reagan

By Michael K. Deaver (Author)
Our Price $ 22.06  
Retail Value $ 25.95  
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Item Number 151009  
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Item Specifications...

Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 7.05" Width: 4.29" Height: 1.24"
Weight:   0.42 lbs.
Binding  Audio Cassette
Release Date   May 31, 2001
Publisher   HarperAudio
ISBN  0694523984  
EAN  9780694523986  
UPC  099455025959  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
Outline ReviewMichael Deaver, a longtime political advisor who served as deputy chief of staff in the Reagan White House, offers an approving, affectionate, and well-written portrait of the former president--but one that, for an insider's account, is surprisingly short on news.

The Ronald Reagan who emerges from Deaver's pages is far different from the popularly held view, fueled by the media, of the president as an amiable but limited man who napped, golfed, and left the business of running the government to his lieutenants. Far from it, Deaver insists: Reagan read widely, kept up with the issues, and "firmly believed that it was his job to set the priorities of his administrations and to make the big decisions." Thoughtful and utterly courteous, if sometimes distant, Deaver's Reagan is a man of unbending conservative principle; careful to cross party lines to secure support for his policy and to judge his opponents by character, not doctrine; stalwart in his devotion to country; and certain, in Deaver's words, "that he was the right guy at the right time." This Reagan can do no wrong, and when controversy arises in Deaver's account it is almost always because someone else has flubbed the play. Unlike Alexander Haig, David Stockman, and other former administration officials who have written about their time in the Reagan White House, Deaver is quick to fall on the sword whenever he must. He takes responsibility, for instance, for the president's controversial decision to lay a wreath at a German cemetery that contained the graves of fallen SS soldiers, and for Reagan's difficulties in convincing voters of the wisdom of an expensive military buildup in the closing years of the cold war. About the Iran-Contra affair, which blackened Reagan's second term, Deaver has little to say, and about his own departure from the administration and subsequent investigation by federal prosecutors he is even more close-mouthed.

Those seeking to learn more about Ronald Reagan as president may come away from Deaver's book disappointed. His admirers, however, will enjoy the anecdotes about "the traits that made him so successful as a leader and so peculiar--and wonderful--as a person." --Gregory McNamee

Product Description

A warm, personal portrait of Ronald Reagan, A Different Drummer brims with recollections from a relationship that has spanned three decades. A former aide and longtime family friend, Michael Deaver worked with the former chief executive for twenty consecutive years. Now he offers his memories of Ronald Reagan as governor, president and friend.

Reagan remains a mystery even to biographers with total access. But in A Different Drummer, Deaver writes not only of Reagan's dizzying highs, but also shares the lows, including the tough times that would test the strength of their friendship. Finally, he shares a poignant look at Reagan today as he battles Alzheimer's. This is Nancy Reagan's "finest hour," Deaver writes, a validation of the greatest love story he has ever known.

With anecdotes that are insightful, entertaining, intimate and surprising, A Different Drummer sheds remarkable new light on an American icon admired by many and understood by few.

Read by Micheal K. Deaver

Buy A Different Drummer: My Thirty Years with Ronald Reagan by Michael K. Deaver from our Audio Book store - isbn: 9780694523986 & 0694523984 upc: 099455025959

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More About Michael K. Deaver

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Former assistant to the president and White House deputy chief of staff during the Reagan administration, Michael K. Deaver is the author of Nancy and the bestselling A Different Drummer: My Thirty Years with Ronald Reagan. He serves as vice chairman, international, for Edelman Worldwide.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Let Reagan Be Reagan  Aug 10, 2007
Long-time Reagan aide Michael Deaver has written a very good book on his thirty years with the man who changed the world. Deaver tells of meeting Reagan in the mid-60's when Deaver was an junior political operative and Reagan was considering a gubernatorial run. Deaver then took a ring-side seat for the greatest political run of our time, from Sacramento to Washington, including near-fatal encounters with John Hinckley Jr. and Matthew Ridgeway in Bitburg.

Deaver also tells the story of the end-game, his last two meetings with the Gipper. By 1995, the President did not know him, and by 1998, the President had lost his social skills and grace. Fortunately Ron had Nancy, and she took care of him for better or worse. Deaver played a key role in the Reagan administrations as Nancy-handler and became a key allie and friend of the Fist Lady.

Deaver makes this book light-reading, it is reminiscences of his boss and friend. He leaves the unpleasant stuff to others. There is a brief mention of Iran-Contra; it is explained away as what happened when the Californians were not there. Also Deaver leaves out most of the story of his indictment, although he deals at length with the demons of his alcoholism.
Warm, credible, insightful  Jun 10, 2007
People close to great men for a long time--aides, valets, advisors--tend either to write hagiographys or they turn on their former employer with a "tell all" intended to cut the great man down to size. This book, refreshingly, is neither. Michael Deaver, in addition to being Ronald Reagan's longtime political advisor, was also Reagan's friend. And a friend tells it like it is, which is what Deaver has done.

Deaver lets us know of Reagan's mistakes and shortcomings--he had a volcanic temper (despite others' testimony that he didn't), he had a hard time apologizing even when he knew he was in the wrong, he trusted people to a fault. At the same time, Deaver credibly tells us where the media and political pundits went wrong in their assessments of Reagan. Most of the book, however, is a thematic presentation of Reagan's character. It was a joy to read, and I highly recommend it.

A friend's homage to his hero, and a great way to get rare insight into Reagan.  May 7, 2007
It is wonderful for history that Michael Deaver has put together this collection of his thoughts and recollections of Ronald Reagan. As you read about Reagan, one theme keeps coming through; he was nearly impossible to know well or truly understand. The President that so many strangers felt like they knew proved to be much more of a puzzle to those who were close to him. For this reason, it is great that Michael Deaver, one of Reagan's closest advisers, has shared his insights on Reagan with anyone who wants to understand the man better.

What he has given us is a deeply personal tribute to his friend and his hero, but also a lens through which we can view Reagan that helps us to understand what kind of man he is.

So who was Reagan? I highly recommend you read this book to find out, but in the end Deaver introduces you to a principled optimist and a very shy man. I was deeply touched by the obviousness of Deaver's affection for Reagan and for the role Nancy Reagan played in the President's life.

I highly recommend this book for anyone trying to get a full perspective of who Ronald Reagan was and what made him the President he was. Excellent book by that can truly add something unique to anyone's study of Ronald Reagan.
A well written book- enjoyable without being pure political  Jan 3, 2007
I liked how this was a personal story of the Reagans. You got to understand where they were coming from, and why they acted the way they did. Not being a huge political freak, I wanted to know about the man, and this book gave good insight into the Reagans. There were a couple of really good quotes that I will always remember.
A Unique Perspective On The Gipper  Oct 11, 2005
In "A Different Drummer", Michael Deaver follows the theme of other authors, including Dinesh D'Souza, who hold that Ronald Reagan had sufficient confidence in his own beliefs to allow him to follow his own instincts regardless of the opinions of others.

Deaver has the unique perspective of thirty years of intimate association with Ronald Reagan. Through the first campaign in California to the second term in the White House, Deaver advanced from campaign staffer to the office adjacent to the Oval Office.

Deaver introduces the reader to the private Reagan. We see Reagan as he lives with Nancy, works with his staff and deals with his adversaries. Deaver portrays Reagan as knowing his core values and adhering to them. Even in controversy, such as the Bitburg decision, Reagan's loyalty to his friends remained unshaken.

A self identified member of the family, Deaver provides an insight into Nancy's role in protecting and leading Reagan through his life.

In the story of his own return to the Reagans after Deaver's downfall, Deaver presents a loyal, concerned Reagan, unlike some others who portray Reagan as dumping cohorts who are no longer useful to him. Finally, through Michael Deaver, we see the declining Reagan in the early stages of Alzheimer's.

"A Different Drummer" is a sympathetic portrayal of a confident, steady leader by one of his closest associates. It is a valuable tool with which to uncover the real Ronald Reagan.

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