Barack Obama shared his 14-book summer 2022 reading list with his Twitter followers.
“I’ve read some great books this year and wanted to share some of my favorites so far,” the former president tweeted on Tuesday (July 26).
Here is a brief overview of Obama’s recommendations.
sea of calm by Emily St John Mandel, 2022
It is the Canadian writer’s sixth book and is speculative fiction.
“In the sea of calmMandel offers one of her best novels and one of her most satisfying forays into the arena of speculative fiction, but it is her ability to convincingly inhabit the ordinary and her ability to project a sustained appreciation of beauty that sets the novel apart”, The New York Times’ check states.
Why we are polarized by Esra Klein, 2020
The non-fiction book vox co-founder and New York Times Columnist addresses political polarization in the US.
“Klein is a master at summarizing the work of others in a compact and elegant manner, and he patiently guides us through the research of Alan Abramowitz on political polarization and Lilliana Mason on social polarization toward the conclusion that “our political identity becomes political has become mega -Identities'”, The New Yorker’s review says.
The candy house by Jennifer Egan, 2022
The New York Times’ Critics say it’s “the literary version of the collaborative novel written by your friends and friends of friends on Facebook or Instagram, with each link leading to a new protagonist. It’s a spectacular palace built out of rabbit holes.”
A little devil in America by Hanif Abdurraqib, 2021
The Guardians Review says that each topic in this book of essays “has been carefully selected in the service of a broader critical project to understand the importance of Black performance in the United States in media such as music, dance, comedy, and even card games.”
To paradise by Hanya Yanagihara, 2022
“This ambitious novel takes great American questions and answers them in an original, compelling way. It has a great feeling. But after all, Yanagihara shows greatness in such small moments.” The New York Times’ review says.
silver gaze by John le Carré, 2021
silver gaze is John le Carré’s last novel, his 26th to be published after his death. The author died in 2020 at the age of 89.
“This slim volume (just over 200 pages) ends rather abruptly, but lacks what le Carré taught us to expect from an ending”, The New York Times’ review says. “In fact, one can wonder if he even got around to finishing the book. He started writing it about a decade ago but then put it aside to write his memoir, The Pigeon Tunnel.’ And although silver gaze said to be his last completed novel, obviously not the last he worked on.”
Black cake by Charmaine Wilkerson, 2022
The Washington Post Critics say it’s a “penetrating look at a delicacy that’s filled with emotional turmoil but built into the soul of a community and reflecting broader questions of identity.” Wilkerson challenges the essence of the tradition known to many of those of Caribbean heritage.”
The Chao family by Lan Samantha Chang, 2022
NPR says in his review that it is “an engaging, character-driven novel that delves beautifully into human psychology; Dostoyevsky himself would certainly agree”.
The night was over Silvia Moreno-Garcia, 2021
“This is noir with a heart of gold, and it’s a tale in which the empathy we feel for its characters ultimately reveals an important truth: that Moreno-Garcia is not only a talented storyteller, but an incredibly versatile one.” is the NPR review says.
mouth to mouth by Antoine Wilson, 2022
“In a landscape of literary fiction that tends toward navel-gazing, it is a pleasure to read a fast-paced story, well told,” The Financial Times says in his review. “Wilson’s driving prose drives the plot forward until the novel’s final sentence takes its final turn. mouth to mouth is to be devoured in one greedy gulp, but the questions it raises linger long after.”
The Great Experiment: Why different democracies fall apart and how they can survive by Yascha Mounk, 2022
In his nobler theory, Mounk captures the key point that our best hope is to transcend the simplistic majority-minority dichotomy that dominates so much in discourse. We should embrace complexity and avoid essentialism. But the big question remains: how?” The Washington Post ponder in his review.
The school for good mothers by Jessamine Chan, 2022
“Chan’s ideas are vivid, but her prose is cool and the effect is that of an extended-release drug that peaks long after it has been swallowed,” The New York Times’ review says. “One test of speculative fiction is whether or not it gives you nightmares, and when mine came – I knew it was coming – it was a full week after I finished that time bomb of a book. “This is a safe place, ladies,” a faceless kidnapper told me in his sleep. Dreadful.”
razor tears by SA Cosby, 2021
“The contradictions in ‘Razorblade Tears’ point to the deeper moral ambiguity in this and all vigilante narratives. Unlike another Shakespearean character who famously said that revenge is a dish best served cold, these Southern fathers are aware of the paradoxes of their mission even as they are forced to carry it out in the name of justice for themselves to end their young. The Los Angeles Times check states.
Blood in the Garden: The Flagrant Story of the 1990s New York Knicks by Chris Herring, 2022
The final book on Obama’s list is for his basketball fans.
The Wall Street Journal Review says: “Persuasively, Mr. Herring, a senior author at sports illustrated who wrote for this newspaper from 2009 to 2016, takes his readers on a journey through the most successful decade in the history of one of the NBA’s most important franchises. Every season during those 10 years, the Knicks made the playoffs, competed in three conference championships, and made two NBA Finals appearances. (They lost both times.)”
https://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/books/news/barack-obama-2022-book-recommendations-b2131990.html Barack Obama shares his reading list for summer 2022