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Bush gone viral: President's book promoted on YouTube

Once upon a time authors promoted their books by reading excerpts in tweed jackets at polite gatherings where wine and cheese were served. But today they’re expected to be social networking whizzes, blasting out tweets and Facebook posts and harnessing the awesome promotional power of the Internet.

Even former presidents.

YouTube viewers can watch George W. Bush promoting his new book "Decision Points" in which he says he wanted to take an "untraditional approach", opting against penning a chronological account of his life and two terms in office. Instead it will comprise reflections on 12 decisions he faced.

“I wanted to give readers a glimpse at the presidency from my perspective,” Bush said in the three-minute clip, which was posted earlier this month by Amazon.com and publisher Crown Books. The book publisher's promotional site for the book also links to the former president's Facebook page and a Twitter feed.

Some of the topics include his reasons for entering politics, the difficulty of the decision he made to run for president, and some of his early Oval Office choices, including his controversial policy on stem-cell research.

Bush said that the book opens with his retelling of his decision to stop drinking at age 40 and the role "faith" played in that decision. Later chapters will focus on the "horrors and heroism" of Sept. 11, 2001; the federal government's response to Hurricane Katrina; the decision to wage wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the financial crisis facing America when Barack Obama took office.

"I reflect on what I got right, what I got wrong, and what I'd do differently if I had the chance," the former president said in the video.

Bush will sit down with TODAY's Matt Lauer for a prime-time special airing Nov. 8 and will appear live on TODAY Nov. 10.

The book, which will be released Nov. 9, will have a print run of 1.5 million copies — the same number given six years ago for Bill Clinton's "My Life."

"Decision Points" is already ranked fourth on Amazon.com's best-seller list for biographies.

The AP contributed to this report.

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