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Former President Barack Obama greeting voters during a Joe Biden campaign rally in October, 2020. The former president released a list of his favourite books from 2021 on Thursday. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

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Barack Obama Reveals His List of Books That Left “A Lasting Impression” in 2021

Obama's favourite 2021 reads include two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning author Colson Whitehead's 'Harlem Shuffle' and 'Klara and the Sun,' by Nobel Prize-winning author Kazuo Ishiguro / BY Andrew Wright / December 16th, 2021

Former U.S. president Barack Obama, 60, perused his bookshelves on Thursday and shared a list of reads that left “a lasting impression” on him in 2021.

The 13-item list, which covers a variety of genres, includes two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning author Colson Whitehead’s Harlem Shuffle. The New York Times bestseller follows furniture salesman Ray Carney as he’s pulled into Harlem’s criminal underground by his cousin Freddie after a botched hotel heist.

The list also includes Crying in H Mart by Korean American musician Michelle Zauner, who writes of her experience growing up as one of the few Asian Americans at her school in Eugene, Ore., the painful loss of her mother and how she forged her own identity. While it’s the singer-songwriter’s first book, the memoir is an expansion of an essay of the same name she wrote for The New Yorker in 2018.

Obama’s roundup dips into the non-fiction genre with Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter Andrea Elliott’s Invisible Child, which tells the story of Dasani Coates, a child living in a Brooklyn homeless shelter who appeared on the front page of the New York Times for five straight days in 2013. The book is the culmination of nearly a decade of reporting, following Coates as she balances her siblings’ care and her own aspirations while facing the realities of inequality in the American city.


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