From the Corner of the Oval by Beck Dory-Stein | Memoir Review

The compulsively readable, behind-the-scenes memoir that takes readers inside the Obama White House, through the eyes of a young staffer learning the ropes, falling in love, and finding her place in the world.

From the Corner of the Oval: A Memoir by Beck Dorey-Stein, Author

Book Details:

From the Corner of the Oval: A Memoir by Beck Dorey-Stein

Published by Spiegel & Grau (July 10, 2018)

Genre: Nonfiction/Memoir/Politics/Obama White House

Source: ARC provided by NetGalley

Format: Kindle, 352 pages

ASIN: B076NSTK6F

 

Where to Buy:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Indiebound | Book Depository

FCC Disclaimer: I received a copy of an ARC from NetGalley via the publisher in exchange for an honest and fair review. Opinions expressed are my own.

Book Description:

In 2012, Beck Dorey-Stein was just scraping by in DC when a posting on Craigslist landed her, improbably, in the Oval Office as one of Barack Obama’s stenographers. The ultimate DC outsider, she joined the elite team who accompanied the president wherever he went, recorder and mic in hand. On whirlwind trips across time zones, Beck forged friendships with a tight group of fellow travelers–young men and women who, like her, left their real lives behind to hop aboard Air Force One in service of the president. But as she learned the ropes of protocol, Beck became romantically entangled with a consummate DC insider, and suddenly, the political became all too personal. Set against the backdrop of a White House full of glamour, drama, and intrigue, this is the story of a young woman making unlikely friendships, getting her heart broken, learning what truly matters, and discovering her voice in the process.

My Review:

“[C]ompulsively readable” describes From the Corner of the Oval so wellOnce I started reading this memoir I couldn’t put it down.
 
Beck Dorey-Stein writes with the pen of a former English teacher. She writes descriptive scenes and characters. Her authenticity shines through and seeds of humor drop along the way.
 
Unlike Dorey-Stein, I’d never think of using Craig’s List to find a job. Dorey-Stein thought nothing of it. And she ends up working as a stenographer in the Obama White House. Work days include trips around the world and across the country on Air Force One. 
 
Eager to make friends and fit in, Dorey-Stein finds herself tangled up in a romance. She shares stories of love, heartbreak, and sadness. Not overlooked are work-related stories from the White House. I found the romance somewhat distracting. Yet I accepted it as part of life for any 20-something no matter where she worked.
 
This is not a tell-all book from behind closed doors in the White House. It is Dorey-Stein’s story of landing the job and learning the ins and outs of the White House. She also meets famous people and travels the globe. Dorey-Stein lives the stories we read and watch in the media.
 
I applaud Dorey-Stein’s first published work as well-written and engaging. For this reason, and the humor woven throughout, I highly recommend From the Corner of the Oval.
 
My Rating:

 

 

Meet the Author:

Memoir Author Beck Dorey-SteinBeck Dorey-Stein is a native of Narberth, Pennsylvania, and a graduate of Wesleyan University. Prior to her five years in the White House, she taught high school English in Hightstown, New Jersey; Washington, D.C.; and Seoul, South Korea.

This is her first book.

 

Connect with Beck:

Website | Facebook


6 thoughts on “From the Corner of the Oval by Beck Dory-Stein | Memoir Review

  1. Sherrey,
    Thanks for the review and for visiting my blog. So sorry to hear your back is hurting again. Praying for grace and relief from pain. Hugs.

    1. Hi Dolly, thanks for stopping by. I know your life is full and busy, so when you take time to stop here, you’re saying no to something else. I appreciate that. The unfortunate thing is that last my last fusion in 2011 grew no new bone. Not a big help, and not a pleasant diagnosis to hear from your surgeon. We’re still waiting for answers and options, and every prayer is welcome.

  2. Your 5-🌠 review + the fact that the author is a former English teacher is endorsement enough for me. Thanks, Sherrey!

    1. Laurie, I was pleasantly surprised at Dorey-Stein’s transparency about her own life and her work as a stenographer in the White House. Additionally, her wit is worth the read!

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