Books loved by Michelle Obama

Michelle Obama

“The Obamas are all readers. I love stories; to be able to escape for a moment.” Michelle Obama, former First Lady of the United States, recently spoke to the American Library Association about her all-time favourite books. To mark the publication of her own memoir, Becoming, we're sharing her favourite reads here.

We also discovered her favourite books for children.

The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah

Set in France during the Second World War, The Nightingale spins the yarn of two sisters – adventurous Isabelle in glamorous Paris, and Viann in the countryside. When war breaks out, the sisters are brought together – and their relationship is tested in ways that neither of them could have expected.

The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah Buy now for £6.47

White Teeth by Zadie Smith

Named “one of the most talked about debut novels of all time”, White Teeth explores friendship, love, different cultures and war across generations. It's also been described as life-affirming, funny, and totally unforgettable. High praise, indeed.

White Teeth by Zadie Smith

What do Mumsnetters think?

“I think she has the most incredible ear for dialogue. The characters are rounded, the historical context is interesting, and it's also very funny.” – spacedonkey

Buy now for £4.50

Commonwealth by Ann Patchett

After an adulterous affair, the fate of two families is irrevocably altered. Spanning more than five decades, Commonwealth is a breathtaking examination of the domino effect that one person can set in motion.

Commonwealth by Ann Patchett

What do Mumsnetters think?

“Such a clever concept for a story. I enjoyed delving into all the characters' lives; a masterpiece in human interaction.” – BeautySwot

Catch up on the webchat with Ann Patchett.

Buy now for £6.47

Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozie Adiche

An insightful exploration of race and identity, Americanah has been a hit with the critics since it was published. The story of two teenage sweethearts who are separated by denied visas and border control, 13 years later they have the chance to meet again. But after so much change, will they take it?

Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozie Adiche

What do Mumsnetters think?

“Such a delicious read. It's a peek into a world that is fascinating and painful, but also rich and humbling.” – Sandymumsnet

Buy now for £6.41

Exit West by Mohsin Hamid

Winner of the LA Times Prize for Fiction, and one of Barack Obama's top 10 books of 2017, Exit West is also a favourite of Michelle's. A love story that goes deeper than most, Saeed and Nadia must foster their blossoming relationship in a city that is falling apart. Looking for a life-changing read? This novel has been called one “to restore your faith in humanity and in the power of imagination.” Phewph.

Exit West by Mohsin Hamid

What do Mumsnetters think?

“Fantastic – it's essentially an allegory for Western approaches to war-induced immigration, and beautifully written.” – KeithLeMonde

Buy now for £5.84

becoming michelle obama

Fascinated by political figures? Check out our round-up of the best political biographies.

Buy Michelle Obama's memoir now

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