08.08.09

The Barack Obama Book Club

Want to read like a president? The Daily Beast pulled together every book that the Reader in Chief has been spotted with since the campaign. Find out what’s on his night table.

Alert, Fellow Obama Book Watchers. The president’s got some new books and at least one old one on tap for the beach this week.

Bill Burton, Obama’s spokesman announced from Oak Bluffs, Martha’s Vineyard, that the president will be reading David McCullough’s John Adams, Richard Price’s Lush Life, Kent Haruf’s Plainsong, George Pelecanos’s The Way Home, and Thomas L. Friedman’s Hot, Flat, and Crowded.

Obama was supposed to be reading Friedman’s book 11 months ago. He was quoting from the book in campaign speeches back in September 2008. Apparently, he’s giving it another go. In total, that’s a goal of 2,333 pages for our Reader in Chief this week. See below for the rest of the Barack Obama Book Club—as culled from newspaper archives and peeks into Air Force One tote bags since the beginning of the 2008 campaign.

What Is the What: The Autobiography of Valentino Achak Deng
by Dave Eggers.  
Politico, May 30, 2009.

Netherland
by Joseph O’Neill.
The New York Times Magazine, May 03, 2009.

Common Wealth: Economics for a Crowded Planet
by Jeffrey D. Sachs.
The New York Times, December 16, 2008.

Lincoln: The Biography of a Writer
by Fred Kaplan.
National Journal, November 26, 2008.

Defining Moment: FDR’s Hundred Days and the Triumph of Hope
by Jonathan Alter.
The New York Times, November 18, 2008.

FDR
by Jean Edward Smith.
The New York Times, November 18, 2008.

Ghost Wars: The Secret History of the CIA, Afghanistan, and Bin Laden, from the Soviet Invasion to September 10, 2001
by Steve Coll.
The New York Times, November 2, 2008.

Collected Poems, 1948 to 1984
by Derek Walcott.
The Daily Telegraph, November 7, 2008.

Hot, Flat, and Crowded: Why We Need a Green Revolution—and How It Can Renew America
by Thomas L. Friedman.
Washington Independent, September 8, 2008.

Unequal Democracy: The Political Economy of the New Gilded Age
by Larry Bartels.
MSNBC, September 3, 2008.

Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln
by Doris Kearns Goodwin.
Time, June 18, 2008.

The Post-American World
by Fareed Zakaria.
The New York Times, May 21, 2008.

Plus: Check out Book Beast, for more news on hot titles, authors and excerpts from the latest books.

Samuel P. Jacobs is a staff reporter at The Daily Beast. He has also written for The Boston Globe, The New York Observer, and The New Republic Online.