The President’s Vacation Reading

13781222Like many of us, President Obama has set an ambitious vacation reading agenda.  Here’s what he  took with him to Martha’s Vineyard:

Hot, Flat, and Crowded by Thomas Friedman

John Adams by David McCullough

Lush Life by Richard Price

Plainsong by Keith Haruf

The Way Home by George Pelecanos

That’s a total of 2,300 pages to get through in one week, so, let’s see, if he reads 300 pages a day…34722966

Slate notes that while the list is not particularly controversial, neither was it “poll-tested,” since all of the authors are white men. And according to The Daily Beast, Mr. Obama had the Friedman book on his nightstand a year ago, and was quoting from it at campaign events.

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About the Author:

Mary Ellen Quinn is the author of the Historical Dictionary of Librarianship (2014), the former editor of Reference Books Bulletin, and a long-time contributing writer to Booklist.

1 Comment on "The President’s Vacation Reading"

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  1. mapaulso@zianet.com' Mary Paulson says:

    THE SWEDISH GYPSY
    Mary Paulson, Eloquent Books, 2008, $14.95, pb, 251pp, 97781606932001
    This well-researched story takes place from 1887 until 1911 in Stockholm, Sweden, and the surrounding countryside. The three main characters give us insight into the life styles of Swedish cultures—gypsy life, business, and home life. The book includes such topics as Swedish politics, health care, and tuberculosis in Sweden at the turn of the 20th century. Fredrik, a successful businessman, his wife Amalia, and Lilly, the gypsy fortuneteller, are the three main characters in this realistically drawn story.
    Lilly is the most fascinating character in this book. She becomes the undoing of Fredrik as he struggles with his independent business. He owns a café that attracts the politicians and philosophers of his day, and he becomes involved in promoting socialism—to his detriment. Fredrik also loves to act and sing and becomes fascinated with the life of Lilly and her brother, Bruno. Fortunately for Fredrick, Bruno is killed before he realizes that Fredrik has fallen in love with his virgin sister. And fortunately for Lilly, Amalia dies of tuberculosis.
    This book will appeal to readers who are interested in gypsy life, attitudes, and beliefs as well as readers who are interested in the early beginnings of the socialist movement in Sweden, readers who are interested in early treatments of tuberculosis, and readers who enjoy a little romance in with their history. Because the book is dedicated to the author’s maternal grandmother, the reader is left wondering if the author’s grandmother was Lilly or Amalia!
    –Naomi Theye, Historical Novel Society

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