Book Review: Promised Land by Barack Obama

I rarely bother to post books I read for pleasure on the blog, but I thought that a lot of the people that I know professionally may be interested in this one. I started reading it in November when we were just starting to be able to think about what a post-Trump America might look like. After four years of hating the news so much I rarely watched it, I was trying to remember what it felt like when I had agreed to let an Obama staffer live in my extra bedroom when the 2008 campaign was tight in Pennsylvania. This book did not restore that optimism.

The book is simultaneously interesting and boring because President Obama really dives in to telling about what his goals were, what challenges he met, and how he and the team dealt with them. The book would be more inspirational, and more of a page turner, if he left out those details. It would also feel like a commercial for his presidency instead of a memoir. If you’re in the mood to hear the details of the political process and how Obama and team tried to manipulate it, you’ll enjoy this book. If you’re looking for a compelling narrative that’s fun to read, there’s an abridged version.

One last recommendation. Definitely get the audiobook, he reads it himself and I think being able to hear his emotions and emphasis while he reads is worth the slower pace.