Michelle Obama's Book Recommendations Can Help You Decide What To Read Next
Readers look forward to Barack Obama's reading list each year, but what about the books his wife Michelle enjoys? I've got eight books Michelle Obama recommends on the list for you below, so you can round out Barack's summer reading list in the right way.
It should come as no surprise to learn that the former First Lady's reading tastes are just as literary as her husband's. Michelle Obama published her first memoir, Becoming, just last year, to remarkable success. In spite of its mid-November release date, Becoming became the bestselling book of 2018, unseating Michael Wolff's January 2018 release, Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House, within two weeks of its launch. Becoming was one of Oprah's Book Club picks for 2018, and was part of a two-book deal the Obamas signed in the spring of 2017. (Barack Obama's book is still on the way, but no release date has been announced.)
The book recommendations on the list below are taken from Michelle Obama's "By the Book" interview, published Dec. 6, 2018 in The New York Times, as well as from an interview with Jenna Bush Hager in March. One title, The Diary of Anne Frank, comes from a memorial that Obama published to Instagram on what would have been the Holocaust victim's 90th birthday.
Check out the eight books Michelle Obama recommends below:
'Song of Solomon' by Toni Morrison
A National Book Critics Circle Award winner, and a contributing factor in Toni Morrison's receipt of the 1993 Nobel Prize in Literature, Song of Solomon focuses on Milkman, a Michigander who grows up estranged from his family and community, even as he searches for filial ties.
'The Girl on the Train' by Paula Hawkins
Paula Hawkins' breakout hit centers on Rachel, an alcoholic divorcée who keeps to her usual morning commute after losing her job. She amuses herself by making up stories about a young couple whose home she passes every morning. When the wife of the other couple goes missing, however, Rachel inserts herself into the investigation, placing herself in the sights of a killer.
'White Teeth' by Zadie Smith
Zadie Smith's award-winning novel, White Teeth, traces the bonds between three families of Londoners from disparate backgrounds. After serving together in World War II, Archie and Samad have built lives in London, where they raise their families. Their stories intertwine with those of the Chalfens, an interfaith family of liberal elites, who befriend Archie's and Samad's children.
'Gone Girl' by Gillian Flynn
When his wife goes missing, Nick Dunne finds himself the prime suspect in what could be her murder. After all, he was having an affair with a former college student when Amy disappeared, and Amy's diaries paint a portrait of Nick as a violent abuser. He can't be innocent — can he?
'An American Marriage' by Tayari Jones
Five years after newlyweds Roy and Celestial were separated by his wrongful conviction for rape, they find themselves unexpectedly reunited when Roy's case is overturned. There's just one problem — Celestial has fallen in love with her childhood best friend, Andre, and he has just proposed.
'Educated' by Tara Westover
Raised off the grid in rural Idaho, Tara Westover grew up without organized schooling or medical treatment. Determined to get out, Westover taught herself enough to gain entrance to Brigham Young University, where she fell in love with learning. Read her story in her bestselling memoir, Educated.
'The Diary of Anne Frank' by Anne Frank
Containing the journals of a young writer whose life was cut short by the Holocaust, The Diary of Anne Frank is required reading in troubling times.
'Commonwealth' by Ann Patchett
Ann Patchett's 2016 bestseller opens on an afternoon christening celebration that leads to infidelity, the destruction of one marriage, and the blending of two families. Years later, the daughter whose christening served as ground zero for the family crisis tells her secrets to a lover, who publishes them in a tell-all book.