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Dreams From My Father A Story of Race and Inheritance *Winner of the 2006 Grammy Award for Best Spoken Word Album* In this lyrical, unsentimental, and compelling memoir, the son of a black African father and a white American mother searches for a workable meaning to his life as a black American. It begins in New York, where Barack Obama learns that his father–a figure he know Dreams From My Father A Story of Race and Inheritance *Winner of the 2006 Grammy Award for Best Spoken Word Album* In this lyrical, unsentimental, and compelling memoir, the son of a black African father and a white American mother searches for a workable meaning to his life as a black American. It begins in New York, where Barack Obama learns that his father–a figure he knows more as a myth than as a man–has been killed in a car accident. This sudden death inspires an emotional odyssey–first to a small town in Kansas, from which he retraces the migration of his mother’s family to Hawaii, and then to Kenya, where he meets the African side of his family, confronts the bitter truth of his father’s life, and at last reconciles his divided inheritance. Bonus Feature includes his 2004 Democratic Convention Keynote Address. The Audacity of Hope Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream In July 2004, Barack Obama electrified the Democratic National Convention with an address that spoke to Americans across the political spectrum. Now, in The Audacity of Hope, Senator Obama calls for a different brand of politics–a politics for those weary of bitter partisanship and alienated by the “endless clash of armies” we see in Congress and on the campaign trail; a politics rooted in the faith, inclusiveness, and nobility of spirit at the heart of “our improbable experiment in democracy.” He also writes, with surprising intimacy and self-deprecating humor, about settling in as a senator, seeking to balance the demands of public service and family life, and his own deepening religious commitment. At the heart of this audiobook is Senator Obama’s vision of how we can move beyond our divisions to tackle concrete problems. Underlying his stories about family, friends, members of the Senate, and even the president is a vigorous search for connection: the foundation for a radically hopeful political consensus. A senator and a lawyer, a professor and a father, a Christian and a skeptic, and above all a student of history and human nature, Senator Obama has written a book of transforming power.


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Dreams From My Father A Story of Race and Inheritance *Winner of the 2006 Grammy Award for Best Spoken Word Album* In this lyrical, unsentimental, and compelling memoir, the son of a black African father and a white American mother searches for a workable meaning to his life as a black American. It begins in New York, where Barack Obama learns that his father–a figure he know Dreams From My Father A Story of Race and Inheritance *Winner of the 2006 Grammy Award for Best Spoken Word Album* In this lyrical, unsentimental, and compelling memoir, the son of a black African father and a white American mother searches for a workable meaning to his life as a black American. It begins in New York, where Barack Obama learns that his father–a figure he knows more as a myth than as a man–has been killed in a car accident. This sudden death inspires an emotional odyssey–first to a small town in Kansas, from which he retraces the migration of his mother’s family to Hawaii, and then to Kenya, where he meets the African side of his family, confronts the bitter truth of his father’s life, and at last reconciles his divided inheritance. Bonus Feature includes his 2004 Democratic Convention Keynote Address. The Audacity of Hope Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream In July 2004, Barack Obama electrified the Democratic National Convention with an address that spoke to Americans across the political spectrum. Now, in The Audacity of Hope, Senator Obama calls for a different brand of politics–a politics for those weary of bitter partisanship and alienated by the “endless clash of armies” we see in Congress and on the campaign trail; a politics rooted in the faith, inclusiveness, and nobility of spirit at the heart of “our improbable experiment in democracy.” He also writes, with surprising intimacy and self-deprecating humor, about settling in as a senator, seeking to balance the demands of public service and family life, and his own deepening religious commitment. At the heart of this audiobook is Senator Obama’s vision of how we can move beyond our divisions to tackle concrete problems. Underlying his stories about family, friends, members of the Senate, and even the president is a vigorous search for connection: the foundation for a radically hopeful political consensus. A senator and a lawyer, a professor and a father, a Christian and a skeptic, and above all a student of history and human nature, Senator Obama has written a book of transforming power.

30 review for Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance; The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream

  1. 5 out of 5

    ***Dave Hill

    (Original review: http://hill-kleerup.org/blog/2009/06/...) For everyone who bitched last election about not knowing “who Barack Obama is,” the answer was as close as his memoir, written in 1995 when he became the first black man elected president of the Harvard Law Review, before his rise into politics (the audiobook was recorded — with an additional preface, while he was Senator; I got a copy of the unabridged version, which also includes his 2004 DNC keynote speech). The book tells of his child (Original review: http://hill-kleerup.org/blog/2009/06/...) For everyone who bitched last election about not knowing “who Barack Obama is,” the answer was as close as his memoir, written in 1995 when he became the first black man elected president of the Harvard Law Review, before his rise into politics (the audiobook was recorded — with an additional preface, while he was Senator; I got a copy of the unabridged version, which also includes his 2004 DNC keynote speech). The book tells of his childhood in Hawaii and Indonesia, his family’s history, his time at Occidental and Columbia Colleges, his oft-maligned “community organizing” period, and his eventual extended trip back to Kenya to visit his father’s kin. Along the way, Obama searched for meaning, for purpose, for a solid concept of family, and for what his place, as a man of both black and white heritage, was in the world. It’s all gripping in its relative simplicity, and left me feeling I better understood the man who came to be president. Obama is, not surprising, an excellent narrator. He certainly has another job to fall back on if his present one doesn’t pan out. Recommended reading (or, in Obama’s own stirring voice, listening).

  2. 4 out of 5

    Kennedy

    'Read both of these before I voted in 2008. These books made Barack Obama so tangible, to my generation, but much smarter, and then I voted for him. Now right wing zealots are wailing, moaning, and gnashing their teeth, because the guy is good—I mean really good. The best president we’ve had in my lifetime! Oct. 2012, Update (submitted after reading some reviews about these books on GoodReads): There are people; some that refer to themselves as "Fair-and-Balanced", some as Republican, some as Tea 'Read both of these before I voted in 2008. These books made Barack Obama so tangible, to my generation, but much smarter, and then I voted for him. Now right wing zealots are wailing, moaning, and gnashing their teeth, because the guy is good—I mean really good. The best president we’ve had in my lifetime! Oct. 2012, Update (submitted after reading some reviews about these books on GoodReads): There are people; some that refer to themselves as "Fair-and-Balanced", some as Republican, some as Tea-Partiers, some Birthers, and some as just "haters", that are trying to rewrite President Obama's story and our story--yes, the one depicted in his autobiography, and the one we are simultaneously experiencing (along with him) in our shared time/space continuum--they are trying to rewrite his story and our history. The goodness of being in the here-and-now is that we can testify. No one need tell us what happened. No one need explain what we're seeing--it's happening in real-time. To hell with noise from pundits, propaganda, and people who write reviews (myself included). Read "Dreams From My Father" and "The Audacity of Hope..." for yourself. I’m still optimistic enough to believe most people are smart enough to separate good wheat from chaff; smart enough to recognize authentic introspection, honestly depicted, as in both these autobiographies.

  3. 5 out of 5

    E. Nygma

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. With a very important U.S. Presidential election on the horizon, I decided to read this book to give me some insight on a man of which I really had no opinion four years ago when he was elected to the Office of The President of the United States of America. Shame on me for not taking the time to learn as much as I could about him then. I will not make that mistake twice! It is a privilege to vote for the leader of the most powerful country in the world and those who have earned that right (eithe With a very important U.S. Presidential election on the horizon, I decided to read this book to give me some insight on a man of which I really had no opinion four years ago when he was elected to the Office of The President of the United States of America. Shame on me for not taking the time to learn as much as I could about him then. I will not make that mistake twice! It is a privilege to vote for the leader of the most powerful country in the world and those who have earned that right (either through reaching the legal age or through acquiring legal U.S. Citizenship) should never make excuses to not spend some time learning as much as possible about both candidates, not just blindly following the one they "think" feels the same way they do about issues. I personally know many voters of all ages who derive their entire political belief system based on bumper stickers, slogans and by surrounding themselves with people who believe the same as they do, which is at the very least, irresponsible. Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance is fairly well-written (though a sometimes the author would seem to drift off in to explaining in minute detail of something fairly insignificant or replaying a long conversation word-for-word which became a bit tedious for me). The story he is telling is an interesting story and it is easy to feel the emotions he is trying to convey. I do need to point out that this book was originally published in 1995 and that was the version I read. It has been noted that the updated 2004 version has some key differences and I will point those differences out in this review. They are important because they are very telling when trying to understand why the author does what he does when dealing with conflict. A note to those planning on reading this book: the 1995 version is the original version with the bio stating that the author, Barack H. Obama, being born in Kenya and has some shocking observations by the author. The 2004 version has removed those statements and parts of the book and made the story more "politically correct". So take care in choosing the edition, there is a difference. The story is an autobiography about an (at the time) unknown man who was born to an interracial couple in 1960. His father was an African national, from a village in Kenya, his mother a career college student from the midwestern U.S. Autobiographies are very useful means to learn from the author's experiences. Autobiographies by authors that were highly successful in their lives, or had a major impact on history, can provide information revealing as many of the valuable lessons the author has learned and recorded for the benefit of the reader. Autobiographies also reveal how authors think and this was the part of the book that took it from a story about a boy growing up in the 60's who is struggling with himself on how to "fit in" as a biracial person to a fervent advocate for the real and perceived injustices suffered by blacks in that era. The author interprets every experience and thing he knows of in terms of liberal sociological and psychological teachings. It comes through, often seemingly illogically, in his interpretation of every experience and thing he acquires knowledge of on almost every page of the book. At the end of his Columbia University days, he decided to become a community organizer (or social activist). The author had previously transferred from Occidental College (Oxy) to Columbia University in New York city since most blacks at Oxy wanted to get along with and be successful in the mainstream and were not interested in social activism. He viewed Columbia as being "in heart of a true city, with black neighborhoods in close proximity." Oxy is located near Pasadena, a highly enviable and pristine town near Los Angeles, noted for its prosperity and resistance to crack-pot ideas and politics (from what this reviewer knows of that town). The author describes the Oxy environment as being similar to Hawaii, "The students were friendly, the teachers encouraging," and the author labels any such behaving blacks as "compromise." While at Oxy, he preferred to associate with: "The more politically active black students. The foreign students. The Chicanos. The Marxist professors and structural feminists and punk-rock performance poets. We smoked cigarettes and wore leather jackets. At night, in the dorms, we discussed neocolonialism, Franz Fanon, Eurocentrism, and patriarchy. When we ground out our cigarettes in the hallway carpet or set our stereos so loud that the walls began to shake, we were resisting bourgeois society's stifling constraints. We weren't indifferent or careless or insecure. We were alienated." And the author appeared to be diligent about being as alien and uncivil in society as he could be with this group of clones of his maternal grandfather. The harsh and bleak realities of portions of New York City that he stayed in and visited while at Columbia compel the author to cease using drugs and practicing other related dissipations that he indulged in while at Oxy. In other words, he fits very comfortably into the harsh and bleak areas of the NYC environment, but could not tolerate the relatively plush, prosperous, and pristine Pasadena environment. This attitude appears to this reviewer as being a very familiar symptom of firm blessed-be-the-poor type beliefs, whose roots comes from the Roman Catholic Church, which is the mother of socialism (minus the church's assorted deities). The author has little else to say about his Junior and Senior years at Columbia. The highlight of his stay at Columbia is a visit from his mother and his sister, to check up on him and to show her daughter all the sights to see in the city as well as other locations in the continental US. After college, he became a research assistant in a consulting house to multinational corporations -- with the intent of staying only long enough to pay off his college expenses. He described himself as "spy behind enemy lines," still in the mind-set of an hostile alien. He was the envy of the other black employees at that firm and they were proud of him but disparaged of his plans to become a community organizer. After he was promoted to financial writer, he left the company (and it leaves him in excellent financial condition) to pursue his community organizer interests. His initial community organizer work proves to be unprofitable (and leaves him in poor financial condition). Then he interviewed with a Chicago based community organizer (highlighting that he looked very out-of-shape and unkempt, and was Jewish). The community organizer asked him, "Hmmph."..."You must be angry about something." The author replied: "What do you mean by that?" The community organizer answered: "I don't know what exactly. But something. Don't get me wrong -- anger's a requirement for the job. The only reason anybody decides to become an organizer. Well adjusted people find more relaxing work." So this preferred career choice showed that the author had developed a large measure of anger about race. (For those who might not know, a community organizer is a person who basically goes into a community of lower income people and points out problems that they should be angry about and incites them to do something about it. At the same time, he lamented that Africans didn't know they were poor until "whites" arrived and showed them all of the things they were missing out on.) His dad (Barack Obama, Sr.) was from Kenya. His dad was resourceful and intelligent enough to get a scholarship to attend college in Hawaii. That is where he met Obama Jr.'s white mother (Ann Dunham). He digressed to describe her parents (Stanley (family familiar: "Gramps") and Madelyn (family familiar: "Toot") Dunham) and their backgrounds. It is his white grandparents who perform a major portion of the author's upbringing (the cover photographs show that author bears a striking resemblance to his white maternal grandfather - the text makes no mention of this). His white grandfather always preferred the company of blacks as he was something of a wild rebel and simply did not fit into main (white) society. This likely influenced his daughter's decision to marry Barack Obama Sr.. His daughter's marriage only lasted a short while. Barack Obama Sr. Received a scholarship to do graduate work at Harvard, so he left the his son at about age two and his mother in Hawaii with the grandparents and went to Harvard. He turned downed a more generous financial offer from another university in New York city that would have allowed the entire family to go there but he preferred the prestige of Harvard - despite its less generous financial offer. So he went to Harvard by himself. Meanwhile, Stanley Dunham received a long and harsh letter from Obama Sr.'s severe father (Hussein Onyango) denouncing the marriage and it became apparent to her from the other contents of the letter that Barack Obama Sr. was still legally (or by local tradition) married to his first Kenyan wife and so she divorced him since she did not approve of polygamy. Before the marriage, Barack Obama Sr. had told Ann Dunham that he had separated from his first Kenyan wife that he had been married in a traditional village marriage. The narrative later explains that polygamy is a Kenyan tradition (ditto the rest of sub Saharan Africa) and when a Kenyan marriage ends, the children go to the father, if he wants them. African traditions are like laws and are treated as having more authority than civil laws (the book does not discuss this matter but you cannot miss it if you know any Africans or have visited the continent). Hussein Onyango was vehemently opposed to that marriage since he had become very familiar with western culture (he had immersed himself in it when the British showed up in order to learn their ways and to learn how to defeat them) and knew that no white woman would put up with a polygamous African husband. His long and harsh letter to Stanley Dunham effectively torpedoed his daughter's marriage to Barack Obama Sr. once she had read it. After Harvard, Barack Obama Sr. went back to Kenya with his next American white wife (Ruth, 2 children) while still married to the first Kenyan wife (2 children). He worked for the local Shell oil division and then used his connections to get a government job in the Ministry of Tourism. It lasted until his well known imperious manner got him into trouble with Jomo Kenyatta himself. He had to scrape by on handouts until Kenyatta died and then he got another government job in the Ministry of Finance. Meanwhile, he routinely became drunk so that his third wife Ruth left him after his first DUI car accident that killed the other driver (a white farmer). The author only saw him for a few days while he was living in Hawaii (when his dad came to stay to recover from his first major auto wreck). He then had a young fourth wife (1 child). Later his dad got killed in his final auto wreck. This missing dad later motivates the author to search out information about him since he was never really raised by him at all and only sent him a number of short general type letters. His dad was spread too thin from one continent to another, one wife and the children by her (not "her children" according to Kenyan tradition), and with other wives and the children by them. Therefore, he ended up not being an effective real-time dad to any of the children he fathered. Only one of the author's male Kenyan relatives realizes that polygamy simply does not work. The author was somewhat shattered by what he found out from his relatives in Kenya about his father. The author's mother married an Indonesian student (Lolo) after divorcing Barack Obama, Sr. and moved to Indonesia with the author. His step-father fathered his half-sister Maya. The author's step-father took a genuine interest in his development and upbringing, teaching him how to survive and cope in a hazardous, corrupt, and wretched society. This training appears to be the basis of the author's unrivalled political skills. This marriage lasts until the author's mother decided that this husband was too cooperative with that country's corrupting practices to get by (her impractical idealism clashed badly with his practical reality methods) and did not like how the author was being treated in the local schools (since Asians are intolerant of racial differences). The author's step-father tried hard to provide for and shelter his family -- at a level far above the norm for Indonesian society, but the author's mother resented it all since none of this conformed to her ideals of absolute ideological perfection. One can afford to have these ideas, courtesy of a rule-of-law society, such as in the US, whether these impractical ideas work or not, anywhere at all -- but not in a social Darwinist type society, such as Indonesia, where no one can survive on the ideals of absolute ideological perfection. So in the end, ideological incorrectness ended the marriage. The author labels his step father as a compromiser, despite all the survival skills he taught him that he very effectively uses for politics. On the other hand, the author's mother was, to some degree, justified to object to the corrupt practices present in Indonesian society since that is what make a third world country a third world country. This reviewer has encountered a number of people from the third world who were raised on social Darwinist principles. They always look only after themselves, they will take advantage of you every time you have to work with them, they take credit for your work, they hide information you need - even if you have requested it, they walk all over you, they make you appear to be useless, and in the end - they cause you to be booted out. Obama's mother then took her children back to Hawaii (when he was about 10 years old) to have their grandparents raise them while she was working on yet another degree and then divorced Lolo. That's right, her work as a perpetual student was more important than than raising her children. Sound familiar? The Dunhams seem to have been already immersed in the lower end of the self-serving, self-righteous, and all about-me social behavior. Back in Hawaii, his maternal grandfather's boss used his alumni connections to get the author admitted to Punahou, an expensive private secondary school in Hawaii. Obama completed grades 5 to 12 at Punahou. A notable incident there was a white high-school friend's discomfort at an all-black party that made the author feel as if he was regarded as societal alien by all whites and this angered him very intensely. This incident appears to stir up his festering anger about race. Later, his grandmother insists on being driven to work on a day following an incident where a black man had harassed her at the bus stop. This incident cements his anger about race. The book even explains how he developed his renown smooth-saying abilities (from pages 94-95 of the 1995 Three Rivers Press and Crown Publishers paperback versions): "...and one day she" (referring to his mother) "had marched into my room, wanting to know the details of Pablo's arrest. I had given her a reassuring smile and patted her hand and told her not to worry, I wouldn't do anything stupid. It was usually an effective tactic, another one of those tricks I had learned: People were satisfied so long as you were courteous and smiled and made no sudden moves. They were more than satisfied, they were relieved -- such a pleasant surprise to find a well-mannered young black man who didn't seem angry all the time." So there lies the explanation for Obama's smooth-saying: an effective tactic, that uses a courteous demeanor and reassuring smile to beguile people into being satisfied with whatever he was saying (while hiding his anger). Moreover, he explains that is also an effective means to deceive (trick) people. This also explains why he manages the amazing feat of continuing to maintain his associations with radicals of all types while maintaining his popular appeal to the mainstream (it looks like the step-father Lolo taught survival skills very well). Those two pages of the 1995 autobiography grabbed this reviewer's attention more than any other portion of the book since they explain so very much about this author. As for rating the book, it is fairly well written and detailed, and provides excellent insights into the author's thinking and experiences (a 5 rating). However, what it reveals is very negative and the book drones on and on throughout with the author preaching his dogmas and all of this makes the book a very unpleasant read, but it was a valuable experience (a 1 to 2 rating). So I gave it an average 3 rating overall. The narrative does not flow chronologically and the account needs to be pieced together as in the manner of solving a puzzle. That is a common literary style and I did not use that for the rating. Anyone that carried out their "civic duty to vote" in November 2008 ar any other time in the future should read or have read this book beforehand no matter how pleasant or unpleasant they may find it to read. It will be a basis for a much more informed experience than all of the useless noise emanating from all of the political campaigns.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Laura Cuevas

    I enjoyed reading about President Obama's history; his beginnings in life that formed who he is were greatly influenced by strong women. His passion for learning started later in his youth and his desire to help people, his community within his family and outside of his family, greatly influenced his educational choices in life as he discovered how education in all forms were important to his growth; from reading, to organizing groups and outreach and going on a safari in Africa. Not the type we I enjoyed reading about President Obama's history; his beginnings in life that formed who he is were greatly influenced by strong women. His passion for learning started later in his youth and his desire to help people, his community within his family and outside of his family, greatly influenced his educational choices in life as he discovered how education in all forms were important to his growth; from reading, to organizing groups and outreach and going on a safari in Africa. Not the type we "safely" adventure on with a tour group, but with a tour guide who guides him through the natural wild pathways with others he trusts and forms friendship with.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Sayali Redij

    The storytelling in the book was perfect. It was engaging. I liked Obama's way of looking at every person in life to comprehend his/her background and putting that character with more compassion and understanding. When he wrote this book, he was not the president but the depth of the characters he drew, experiences of racial encounters, Community work with the efforts he took to understand his roots were inspiring. The flow of the story reaches at the end in Kenya and it seemed like an impeccabl The storytelling in the book was perfect. It was engaging. I liked Obama's way of looking at every person in life to comprehend his/her background and putting that character with more compassion and understanding. When he wrote this book, he was not the president but the depth of the characters he drew, experiences of racial encounters, Community work with the efforts he took to understand his roots were inspiring. The flow of the story reaches at the end in Kenya and it seemed like an impeccable conclusion which is followed by a beautiful epilogue

  6. 5 out of 5

    Shweta

    This is the best book one could read if he does not believe that change can take place even with the effort of one individual. This book gives you a whole journey of a young black boy who did not know about his origins and on his ways to life how he managed himself, how he emerged as a powerful, intelligent lawyer of the USA leaving behind his old way of living in which all the youth of nowadays is trapped. This is the story of transition, this is the story of confidence, this is the story of fi This is the best book one could read if he does not believe that change can take place even with the effort of one individual. This book gives you a whole journey of a young black boy who did not know about his origins and on his ways to life how he managed himself, how he emerged as a powerful, intelligent lawyer of the USA leaving behind his old way of living in which all the youth of nowadays is trapped. This is the story of transition, this is the story of confidence, this is the story of finding one's origin, this is the story of finding purpose.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Mary Keen

    Can't believe i hadn't read this yet! I believe this is the updated version with a new intro and also his nominating speech for Kerry at the end. Both show his extraordinary writing talent. I tho't it was amazing and so interesting --what a life he had already had! I had less interest in details about his huge family back in Kenya --got pretty confusing w various wives, many children, but maybe that was the point. I really liked Obama's narration of most of it. Is there anything he doesn't do well Can't believe i hadn't read this yet! I believe this is the updated version with a new intro and also his nominating speech for Kerry at the end. Both show his extraordinary writing talent. I tho't it was amazing and so interesting --what a life he had already had! I had less interest in details about his huge family back in Kenya --got pretty confusing w various wives, many children, but maybe that was the point. I really liked Obama's narration of most of it. Is there anything he doesn't do well?! I doubt it! Overdrive @ 1.25

  8. 5 out of 5

    Sanjukta

    Raises important questions on identity and race. Provocative yet soulful. There was peace in his writing.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Shawna

    I listened to the audio version. Well written interesting and comforting in this age of corruption.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Rafael Suleiman

    A very good audio book.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Julie Smith

    Interesting look at the life of this complex man and his amazing background from Hawaii to Chicago to Africa.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Sue Roselle

    First memoir of Barack Obama first published following his graduation from Harvard Law School. Book is divided into three primary sections. The first is his early life in Hawaii and Indonesia through college at Columbia. Second section is devoted to his two years working as a community organizer in Chicago. The third section focuses on his extended trip to Kenya where he met his Obama relatives. Story does not equal the outstanding writing.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Zaz

    I don't know if it is because I'm somewhat interested in politics, law and policy or because I listened to Obama read this himself, but I didn't find this book to be as dry as others did. Obviously, it's a finely crafted delivery of his platform and politics, burnished to a palatable sheen, but nevertheless, I felt as though I came away with some sense of who Obama is, both as a leader, a man, and a husband, for good or ill. It's hard to write a review for the memoir such a divisive figure and n I don't know if it is because I'm somewhat interested in politics, law and policy or because I listened to Obama read this himself, but I didn't find this book to be as dry as others did. Obviously, it's a finely crafted delivery of his platform and politics, burnished to a palatable sheen, but nevertheless, I felt as though I came away with some sense of who Obama is, both as a leader, a man, and a husband, for good or ill. It's hard to write a review for the memoir such a divisive figure and not feel as though you'll be excoriated either way, but I'm proud to call him my president. It takes tremendous courage (and ego, granted) to tackle what must be a miserable job. Somewhere in every president is someone who is trying to make America better, and I think Obama does better than most.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth

    from the library a lot of pressure on this from the library computer: Summary: Dreams from my father: "In New York ... Barack Obama learns that his father--a figure he knows more as a myth than as a man--has been killed in a car accident. This sudden death inspires an emotional odyssey--first to a small town in Kansas, from which he retraces the migration of his mother's family to Hawaii, and then to Kenya, where he meets the African side of his family, confronts the bitter truth of his father's l from the library a lot of pressure on this from the library computer: Summary: Dreams from my father: "In New York ... Barack Obama learns that his father--a figure he knows more as a myth than as a man--has been killed in a car accident. This sudden death inspires an emotional odyssey--first to a small town in Kansas, from which he retraces the migration of his mother's family to Hawaii, and then to Kenya, where he meets the African side of his family, confronts the bitter truth of his father's life, and at last reconciles his divided inheritance"--Container.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Zoe's Human

    If a book is abridged, audio or otherwise, the word ABRIDGED should be in large, attention-drawing letters on the cover. I got all the way to the end of The Audacity of Hope before I discovered that these were abridged recordings. The rating is a reflection of my feelings about abridged books and not necessarily these particular books. I didn't bother to listen to Dreams from My Father since I want to know what the whole book says. I will read both books IN FULL eventually. If a book is abridged, audio or otherwise, the word ABRIDGED should be in large, attention-drawing letters on the cover. I got all the way to the end of The Audacity of Hope before I discovered that these were abridged recordings. The rating is a reflection of my feelings about abridged books and not necessarily these particular books. I didn't bother to listen to Dreams from My Father since I want to know what the whole book says. I will read both books IN FULL eventually.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Cristina

    Motivated by my new interest in audio books read by their authors, I picked this one which I've always meant to read. The president is a brilliant man and both Audacity of Hope and Dreams of My Father were incredibly interesting. He does a wonderful job of explaining politics and his philosophies along side personal stories and anecdotes, especially in his incredible voice. Motivated by my new interest in audio books read by their authors, I picked this one which I've always meant to read. The president is a brilliant man and both Audacity of Hope and Dreams of My Father were incredibly interesting. He does a wonderful job of explaining politics and his philosophies along side personal stories and anecdotes, especially in his incredible voice.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Nightshadequeen

    it does a good job of explaining Obama's thought processes. I agree with him on some points, not so much on others, but it's pretty well written although could do with a few more citations on his claims. Somewhat amusing in points. Quite insightful in some places; I definitely was rolling my eyes in others. But yeah, it's a book written by a politician, what did you expect? Overall, pretty good. it does a good job of explaining Obama's thought processes. I agree with him on some points, not so much on others, but it's pretty well written although could do with a few more citations on his claims. Somewhat amusing in points. Quite insightful in some places; I definitely was rolling my eyes in others. But yeah, it's a book written by a politician, what did you expect? Overall, pretty good.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Beth

    I finished The Audacity of Hope portion which I give 4 stars. This is what helped him win the first election, the ideas and passion he has in this book. He seems much more the common man, easy to relate too, unlike now right before the second election. Lots of family history in Dreams from my Father but the chicago section on organizing was a bit long. Over all pretty interesting.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Moses Abubakar

    A book that touched on different facets of Barry's life- growth, travels, works, challenges, achievements and even determination in going down to Africa to explore his patriarchal lineage. A most read for all. A book that touched on different facets of Barry's life- growth, travels, works, challenges, achievements and even determination in going down to Africa to explore his patriarchal lineage. A most read for all.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Paul Bialek

    I tend to be politically conservative, but I liked this book, which is a memoir about Barack Obama's early life and, really, about his family: parents, grandparents, step-father, half-siblings, etc. While it's about race, it's not a trite liberal treatment of race. I tend to be politically conservative, but I liked this book, which is a memoir about Barack Obama's early life and, really, about his family: parents, grandparents, step-father, half-siblings, etc. While it's about race, it's not a trite liberal treatment of race.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Mohamed Jama

    dreams obam's father is the road his son must be the american president dreams obam's father is the road his son must be the american president

  22. 5 out of 5

    Liberte Louison

    Enjoyed Dreams from My Father a lot more than Audacity of Hope.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Kenan Mammadli

    just amazing story!

  24. 5 out of 5

    Marto Mugss

    PRICELESS!

  25. 5 out of 5

    Bettie

    Loved this one, too, by Obama, but it's clearly written by a younger man. His youth shows in his writing style. I enjoyed it for the opportunity to learn more about his childhood and background. Loved this one, too, by Obama, but it's clearly written by a younger man. His youth shows in his writing style. I enjoyed it for the opportunity to learn more about his childhood and background.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Kenneth

    A well-written autobiography. I read it before Barack was President,so it's meaning was different than as opposed to now. A well-written autobiography. I read it before Barack was President,so it's meaning was different than as opposed to now.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Mark

    Its really amazing.

  28. 5 out of 5

    LaRhonda

    Currently downloaded on my iPod haven't started listening to it yet but its recorded by President Barack Obama. Currently downloaded on my iPod haven't started listening to it yet but its recorded by President Barack Obama.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Shirley Yant

    About as interesting as watching paint dry or grass grow.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Sharon

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