Michelle Frightened at First: Book

Details of Jodi Kantor book continue behind-the-scenes look
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 10, 2012 1:05 AM CST
Michelle Frightened at First: Book
In this Dec. 14, 2011 file photo, President Obama and Michelle Obama arrive on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington.   (AP Photo/Haraz N. Ghanbari, File)

Details from The Obamas, by New York Times reporter Jodi Kantor, continue to trickle out, and ABC News reports on revelations of a personal nature. According to Kantor, Michelle Obama felt "frightened and alone" during her first days in the White House. The first lady wanted to stay behind longer in Chicago with her two girls, and worried about living in a bubble and her daughters bumping into White House tourists during playdates. And the pressure was enormous. "She saw the responsibility, the impact, the potential of her role,” writes Kantor. And "everyone was waiting for a black woman to make a mistake,” an adviser told the author.

Obama powerfully stepped beyond that first anxiety, but not without struggle; the Times ran an adaptation of the book that recounts the first lady's clashes with Robert Gibbs (in one case, the press secretary went on a profanity-filled tirade) and Rahm Emanuel. But the White House has strongly disputed many of the assertions in the book, calling them Kantor's "opinions" and an "over-dramatization of old news," reports the Washington Post. The book goes on sale next week. Click for more details. (More Barack Obama stories.)

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