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Sunday, February 10, 2008

The Audacity of Hope by Barack Obama

Talk to anyone who has known me for more than a couple of years and they'll be surprised to learn that I read a book about a politician (not counting long dead ones.) In the last few years I find myself caring more and more, and becoming more interested in what is going on around me. I've written letters to my local representatives- something I wouldn't have even considered 6 years ago. I am still woefully lacking in a political education. I don't understand a lot of the political process. But I'm trying and, for me, that's huge.

I started The Audacity of Hope several weeks ago. The beginning was pretty hard for me because it referenced a lot of political history that I just didn't know about. Once of the side effects of pregnancy is that I'm tired all the time, and staying awake to read about political history (however lightly written) was tough. After this section Obama breaks down his feelings on various aspects of our country: education, race, family, and religion among others. It's not heavy handed, in fact, it's very conversational. I found that the book was making me depressed, not because I didn't agree, but rather because I DID. It was very hard to ignore the things I've been ignoring when someone is pointing them out to you. Obama doesn't blatantly blame anyone, but does point out areas where he feels change would be good. It's not a book of his position or his platform on any of the topics. Reading this doesn't tell me what he's going to DO, but it does tell you how he FEELS. This might not be what you're looking for in a book by a politician. Or, if you're me, it's exactly what you're looking for. It was hard to read but I'm glad I read it.

Cross posted at We'd Rather Read.


  1. I'd really like to read this book - thanks for the good review.

  2. I find that the older I get the more interested I am in politics as well--even though there is so much "political" crap that goes on. :) This one sounds interesting--I've heard a lot about it.

  3. I will definitely check this out, and I'm going to read Hillary Clinton's "It takes a village".

    Did you hear that Obama's recording of his book won best audio book at last night's Grammys?

  4. I read It Take a Village back when it came out. I don't remember the details, but it seems I liked this more.

    I saw that he won and considered adding that to my review, but laziness won.

  5. I'm impressed you're able to read something nonfiction and political while you're pregnant. The last time I was pregnant, I just re-read my Rex Stout and Agatha Christie mysteries, because my brain was too fried for anything else. :)

    It sounds good. I think I'll put it on my to-look-for list. Thanks for the recommendation!

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  7. Does he explain how he intends to put a stop to lobbyism in Washington? I would read it if he did. I will read it if he is the nominee or the VP.

    I remember reading Hillary's autobiography when it came out, that was such a good read.

  8. No, he does not give any specific examples of how he plans to do things. It was very casual, very getting to know him, not tactical.

  9. Has he ever explained how he is going to do that? He seems all talk and no action - I would love to know how he intends to do it though.

  10. One of things I appreciate about Sen. Obama is that he is genuine. His position and stance on issues in America are greatly valued and right on point. I plan on reading his book soon after my semester is up.


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