Barack Obama shares his annual summer reading list — and one of the authors is so honored

Tanya Edwards
Former President Barack Obama (Photo: Erin Hooley/Chicago Tribune/TNS)n

Former President Barack Obama has been enjoying his retirement from political office, and apparently he’s been spending some of his free time reading.

In a post on Facebook, Obama writes that one of his favorite parts of summertime is “deciding what to read when things slow down just a bit, whether it’s on a vacation with family or just a quiet afternoon. This summer I’ve been absorbed by new novels, revisited an old classic, and reaffirmed my faith in our ability to move forward together when we seek the truth.”

You can see his selections below.

One of the authors on the list, Tayari Jones, was flattered that the former president included her book, An American Marriage, on his list. She shared a post on Twitter thanking him.

Jones, whose novel is also an Oprah’s book club pick, noted she was currently “on island,” referring to vacationing on Martha’s Vineyard, where the Obama family has spent many relaxing summers. The excited author offered to deliver signed copies to the former president and first lady, or drop them off at the local bookstore. At the time of this article, Obama had not responded to her offer.

The former president isn’t completely off the grid, though. He paid his respects to former United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan on Saturday after Annan’s death at the age of 80.

“Kofi Annan was a diplomat and humanitarian who embodied the mission of the United Nations like few others,” Obama said in a Facebook post. “His integrity, persistence, optimism, and sense of our common humanity always informed his outreach to the community of nations. Long after he had broken barriers, Kofi never stopped his pursuit of a better world, and made time to motivate and inspire the next generation of leaders. Michelle and I offer our condolences to his family and many loved ones.”

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