• Gina Smith

Crown Sets Michelle Obama’s Memoir, ‘Becoming,’ for November


Former First Lady Michelle Obama’s much-anticipated memoir, Becoming, will be published November 13 by the Crown Publishing Group. The Penguin Random House unit announced on Sunday that the book will be released simultaneously in 24 languages.

Becoming is part of the landmark deal PRH struck with the Obamas in February 2017. The two-book agreement, for one title by Barack Obama and one by Michelle Obama, wound up earning the couple a reported $65 million advance.

An audiobook edition of Becoming, read by Michelle Obama, will be released in digital and physical formats by Penguin Random House Audio. She will also kick off the U.S. and international book tour November 13. Details on the tour will be announced at a later date.

Considered one of the most popular First Ladies of recent times, Michelle Obama uses the book to offer the public an in-depth look at the experiences that have shaped her life. The book offers an intimate look at the first African American woman to serve as First Lady; from her childhood in Chicago to her career as a working executive and mother, as well as the journey that took her and Barack Obama to the White House. The book examines her policy advocacy for women and girls, as well as the demands of raising two daughters (and occasionally showing off a few nifty dance moves) in the glaring spotlight of the media and the polarized political arena of Washington DC.

Penguin Random House will also work in conjunction with The Obama Foundation to donate one million books in the Obamas' name to First Books, a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing new books and other materials to children in North America.

In a prepared statement, Michelle Obama described writing Becoming as “a deeply personal experience. It has allowed me, for the very first time, space to honestly reflect on the unexpected trajectory of my life. I hope my journey inspires readers to find the courage to become whomever they aspire to be. I can’t wait to share my story.”

Correction: An earlier version of this story said PRH would be donating one million copies of Becoming to First Books. The publisher is working with the Obamas to donate one million books, not one million copies of Becoming, to the nonprofit organization. #SPMGMedia

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