A Grain of Wheat, a book written by Ngugi wa Thiong’o, a Kenyan professor based in the U.S. was among the 2018 top favorite reads for President Obama, the 44th president of the United States of America. 

Mr. Obama, unsurprisingly, lists the former first lady Michelle Obama’s book, “Becoming” at the top of his list. Mrs. Obama’s book is currently number one on the The New York Times bestselling non-fiction book list.

In addition to Ngugi wa Thiong’o book, other African or Immigrant writers that were among the former president's 2018 reads include:

  • A Grain of Wheat by Ngugi wa Thiong’o (Kenyan Roots)
  • Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe (Nigerian Roots)
  • Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (Nigerian Roots)
  • Long Walk to Freedom by Nelson Mandela (South African Roots)
  • Washington Black by Esi Edugyna (Ghanian Roots)
  • A House for Mr Biswas by V.S. Naipaul (Trinadad & Tobago Roots)
  • Warlight by Michael Ondaatje (Sri Lanka Roots)
  • The New Geography of Jobs by Enrico Moretti (Italian Roots)
  • Immigrant, Montana by Amitava Kumar (Indian Roots)

Ngugi Wa Thiongo

A Grain of Wheat is available on Amazon.

For a full list of Obama's 2018 favorite reads, see below:

  1. Becoming by Michelle Obama (obviously Obama's favorite!)
  2. An American Marriage by Tayari Jones
  3. Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
  4. The Broken Ladder: How Inequality Affects the Way We Think, Live, and Die by Keith Payne
  5. Educated by Tara Westover
  6. Factfulness by Hans Rosling
  7. Futureface: A Family Mystery, an Epic Quest, and the Secret to Belonging by Alex Wagner
  8. A Grain of Wheat by Ngugi wa Thiong’o
  9. A House for Mr Biswas by V.S. Naipaul
  10. How Democracies Die by Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt
  11. In the Shadow of Statues: A White Southerner Confronts History by Mitch Landrieu
  12. Long Walk to Freedom by Nelson Mandela
  13. The New Geography of Jobs by Enrico Moretti
  14. The Return by Hisham Matar
  15. Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe
  16. Warlight by Michael Ondaatje
  17. Why Liberalism Failed by Patrick Deneen
  18. The World As It Is by Ben Rhodes
  19. American Prison by Shane Bauer
  20. Arthur Ashe: A Life by Raymond Arsenault
  21. Asymmetry by Lisa Halliday
  22. Feel Free by Zadie Smith
  23. Florida by Lauren Groff
  24. Frederick Douglass: Prophet of Freedom by David W. Blight
  25. Immigrant, Montana by Amitava Kumar
  26. The Largesse of the Sea Maiden by Denis Johnson
  27. Life 3.0: Being Human in the Age of Artificial Intelligence by Max Tegmark
  28. There There by Tommy Orange
  29. Washington Black by Esi Edugyan

obama favorite 2018 reads

Michelle Obama

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