President Barack Obama released his reading list for the summer, highlighted by the works of late Nobel Prize-winning author Toni Morrison, who died earlier this month.
“It’s August, so I wanted to let you know about a few books I’ve been reading this summer, in case you’re looking for some suggestions,” Obama said in an Instagram post.
“To start, you can’t go wrong by reading or re-reading the collected works of Toni Morrison. Beloved, Song of Solomon, The Bluest Eye, Sula, everything else — they’re transcendent, all of them. You’ll be glad you read them.”
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It's August, so I wanted to let you know about a few books I've been reading this summer, in case you're looking for some suggestions. To start, you can't go wrong by reading or re-reading the collected works of Toni Morrison. Beloved, Song of Solomon, The Bluest Eye, Sula, everything else — they're transcendent, all of them. You’ll be glad you read them. And while I’m at it, here are a few more titles you might want to explore.
Morrison was praised for exposing the hidden lives of African Americans in her works, which received praise from many celebrities including Oprah Winfrey. She was 88.
Obama presented Morrison with the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2012.
Aside from Morrison, the former Commander in Chief also recommended a slew of new releases including Pulitzer Prize-winner Colson Whitehead’s haunting new novel The Nickel Boys, which is a fictional account based on the Dozier School for Boys in Florida, a reform school marred with a gruesome history of abuse and beatings.
Obama also highlighted new releases from some of today’s contemporary fiction power players including Ted Chiang’s latest short-story collection, Exhalation, who previously wrote the story based on the award-winning movie “Arrival.”
Obama said Exhalation will “make you think, grapple with big questions, and feel more human.”
On Facebook, Obama called the memoir Maid by Stephanie Land an “unflinching look at America’s class divide, a description of the tightrope many families walk just to get by, and a reminder of the dignity of all work.”
He also praised Téa Obreht’s second novel, Inland, which follows two storylines in 19th-century American West. Obrhet was a finalist for the National Book Award in 2011 for her debut bestseller, The Tiger’s Wife.
Other books noted include Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel, Men Without Women by Haruki Murakami, American Spy by Lauren Wilkinson, Lab Girl by Hope Jahren, The Shallows by Nicholas Carr, and How to Read the Air by Dinaw Mengestu.