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President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama are introduced at the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation's 46th Annual Legislative Conference Phoenix Awards Dinner, Saturday, Sept. 17, 2016 in Washington. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

NEW YORK (AP) — Barack and Michelle Obama have book deals.

The former president and first lady have signed with Penguin Random House, the publisher announced Tuesday. Financial terms were not disclosed for the books, which several publishers had competed for, although the deals are likely in the tens of millions of dollars.

Both Obamas have published through Crown, a Penguin Random House imprint. But Penguin Random House declined comment on which imprint or imprints the books would be released through.

“We are absolutely thrilled to continue our publishing partnership with President and Mrs. Obama,” Penguin Random House CEO Markus Dohle said in a statement.

“With their words and their leadership, they changed the world, and every day, with the books we publish at Penguin Random House, we strive to do the same. Now, we are very much looking forward to working together with President and Mrs. Obama to make each of their books global publishing events of unprecedented scope and significance.”

The Obamas were represented in negotiations by Robert Barnett and Deneen Howell of Williams & Connolly. Barnett has worked on deals with Barack Obama’s two immediate predecessors, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, and with Michelle Obama’s predecessors Hillary Rodham Clinton and Laura Bush.

The Obamas plans to donate a “significant portion” of their author proceeds to charity, including to the Obama Foundation. Barack Obama’s book is a strong contender to attract the largest advance for any ex-president; the previous record is believed to be $15 million for Bill Clinton’s “My Life.”

The unique dual arrangement announced Tuesday is for books that are among the most anticipated in memory from a former president and first lady. Barack Obama is widely regarded as one of the finest prose stylists among modern presidents, and his million-selling “Dreams from My Father” and “The Audacity of Hope” are considered essential to his rise to the White House. Michelle Obama has given few details about her time as first lady: Her only book is about food and gardening, “American Grown,” released in 2012. Both Obamas are widely popular with the public in the U.S. and abroad.

Titles and release dates were not immediately available. The books will reflect on the Obamas’ White House years, although Penguin Random House declined to give further details. A publishing official with knowledge of the negotiations said that Barack Obama’s book will be a straightforward memoir about his presidency, while Michelle Obama plans to write an inspirational work for young people that will draw upon her life story.

The official was not authorized to discuss the negotiations and asked not to be identified.

Presidential memoirs have contributed little to the literary canon, a tradition many believe Barack Obama will change. But recent books have found large audiences: Clinton’s “My Life” and George W. Bush’s “Decision Points” were million sellers. Books by first ladies, including Hillary Clinton’s “Living History,” have been dependable best-sellers.


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13 thoughts on “Michelle And Barack Obama Get A Record Book Payday

  1. specialt757 on said:

    Ditto Arthur and pac REVEAL EVERY DIRTY DETAIL. I’m guessing naming names may get them sued, but make it so there is no question who is being referred. The problem with whites like Larry is they don’t believe they are racist and that the country has moved passed racism, WE HAVEN’T, we haven’t, we haven’t. As long as we have racist cabinet members and congressional lawmakers in this country, racism will always exist. Vote during the mid-year elections and begin the process of removing them ALL.

  2. Arthur Childress on said:

    This will be a book for the ages. I just hope they’re honest about their experience. They are so classy they may not want to speak on all the stuff they endured as the first Black first family. Personally….I hope they expose all of the virulent racism they encountered and name names!

  3. I will buy and read their books regardless of the titles and/or subject matter. However, I just pray and hope that they disclose and are truthful and tell the many stories of all the unknown acts of racism that as the first black family they were faced with but handled with so much dignity and grace.

  4. I can’t wait until Barack and Michelle pen their books about what it was like to be the first family of color to live in the WH for eight years!!!!!

    That’s one time I will spend the night outside to be first in line!!!!!!

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