The Obamas Sign Joint Book Deal Rumored to Be Worth 60 Million
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The former president and former first lady signed a joint deal with Penguin Random House
Last night, Penguin Random House announced that after a heated auction they had secured the rights to forthcoming books from both Barack and Michelle Obama. For the former President, this will be his fourth book following best selling memoirs Dreams of My Father and The Audacity of Hope, and a children’s book Of Thee I Sing. The former first lady published American Grown in 2012, which told the story of the White House Garden.
While the details of the deal have not been released, The New York Times reported “the opening offers for Mr. Obama’s book alone were in the $18 million to $20 million range.” The total is rumored to be about $60 million. If true, the sum significantly outpaces Bill Clinton’s and George W. Bush’s $10 million post-presidential memoir advances and Hilary Clinton’s $8 million sum for her 2003 memoir Living History.
The Obama’s plan to donate a portion of their advances to charities, including the Obama Foundation. Additionally, Penguin Random House will donate one million books in the Obama’s name to First Book, a literacy focused non-profit, and Open eBook, a partner of the White House Digital Education Initiative.
There has yet to be a definitive announcement about what subjects the books will cover — or what imprints they will appear on — however many hope Barack Obama’s text will draw from the journal he kept in office. The New York Times speculated, “his memoir could include behind-the-scenes moments that were captured as major events unfolded.” Considering the announcement came on the night of Donald Trump’s first address to congress, hopefully it will also include some less-than-subtle thoughts on the current administration.