ISBN is

978-0-7393-2576-6 / 0739325760

Dreams from My Father (Random House Large Print)

by Obama, Barack

Publisher:Random House Large Print

Edition:Hardcover

Language:English

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About the book:

One of the many refreshing things about Barack Obama is his self-deprecating sense of humour. Responding to the unrealistic expectations for his presidency, Obama said 'I've been sent by my father from the planet Krypton to save the Earth.' Unfortunately, the irony of this self-comparison to Superman was probably lost on many of his dedicated followers, who clearly believe that  once in office  he can exercise a few super powers and rid the world of all its thronging ills, economic and otherwise. But as Dreams from My Father proves, Obama is no fool, and knows the cold realities that face him, even though this intelligently written book is filled with optimism and hope. Which is understandable enough; after all, what else could Obama offer?

The politicians who can actually write may be counted on one hand, but on the evidence here, Barack is among their number (he reminds us that William Faulkner said the past is never dead and buried  it isnt even past; can you imagine Barack's predecessor in the Oval Office quoting Faulkner  unless the allusion was written for him by one of his speechwriters?). In fact the book -- Obamas remarkable life story  was, of course, written before his destiny was irrevocably changed by his success in the US presidential election, and it is a striking account of a young man coming to terms with the problem of his identity and issues of belonging in a racially divided country (a racial division that Obama  by the very example of his success  may do a considerable amount towards healing). The son of a black African father and a white American mother, Obama details the dramatic journey that constituted his parents life before his own trip to Kenya to confront the sobering realties of his fathers life. It is a book about coming to terms with the past  and comparisons with writers such as Proust in such areas are not as ridiculous as they would be if almost any other politician were involved.

Dreams from My Father gives real hope that dumbing down  in order to appeal to the lowest common denominator  will not be the hallmark of the Obama presidency. --Barry Forshaw

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