HomeGroupsTalkZeitgeist
Big news! LibraryThing is now free to all! Read the blog post and discuss the change on Talk.
dismiss
This site uses cookies to deliver our services, improve performance, for analytics, and (if not signed in) for advertising. By using LibraryThing you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your use of the site and services is subject to these policies and terms.
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Loading...

Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance

by Barack Obama

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
7,872185762 (3.91)310
"[I]n 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.… (more)
Recently added byhidalgoe, MarcGUETA, Edward-C, katihinds, 2blackcats, jpierces2, 0xreid, karLcx, ldbackues, private library
  1. 50
    The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream by Barack Obama (foof2you)
    foof2you: This is Obama's life story and how became the man he is today.
  2. 30
    Obama: An Intimate Portrait by Pete Souza (TheLittlePhrase)
  3. 30
    The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini (whitewavedarling)
    whitewavedarling: While these works may be in regard to entirely different cultures and nations, and one of fiction while the other is nonfiction, both are literary coming-of-age tales that are not only beautiful written, but relevant to today's issues and diversity, and memorable for their tales and messages.… (more)
  4. 20
    Renegade: The Making of a President by Richard Wolffe (Furu)
  5. 10
    Shade: A Tale of Two Presidents by Pete Souza (TheLittlePhrase)
  6. 10
    The Long Walk of Nelson Mandela by Nelson Mandela (maitebauwens)
  7. 10
    Becoming by Michelle Obama (TheLittlePhrase)
Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 310 mentions

English (175)  Dutch (3)  Norwegian (2)  Spanish (2)  French (2)  German (1)  All languages (185)
Showing 1-5 of 175 (next | show all)
So I always feel a little bit weird rating memoirs. I don't ever want someone to take a look at one of my reviews and think that equals me hating their life, but in some cases not all memoirs are the same. Luckily, for the most part I really liked this one.

Prior to becoming President of the United States, Barack Obama wrote the first of his memoirs. At the time he was preparing to launch his campaign to run for the Senate in Illinois.

We have President Obama providing details on his parents courtship (Barack Obama, Sr. of Kenya, and Ann Dunham of Wichita, Kansas) after they meet at the University of Hawaii. For a time the couple was happy, but eventually his father left and eventually divorced his mother when President Obama was two years old.

I have to say that reading about President Obama's upbringing by his grandparents and mother in Hawaii was fascinating. You can read his push/pull to figure out where he belonged, what did it mean to be half-white and half black in Hawaii.

He had several internal discussions with himself on what to do with his half-Kenyan side since that part of his father's family was separate from him for the most part. When President Obama's father eventually comes to stay with them again for a month when he was a child, I could feel the tension that he felt, and the sadness that his mother felt as well for not being able to work things out with this man that definitely seemed so big. When we get past his recollections of college and working I was happy to read more about his family that lives in Kenya.

I thought the writing was very good, but will say that the flow was hit or miss at times. I think that anytime President Obama strayed away from his family I found myself losing interest. Reading about his struggles in high school, college, and eventually when he is living and working in New York and Chicago did not come as a surprise to me. I think that any black woman or man that is one of the first people in their family to graduate college/grad school or obtains a high paying job deals with "black guilt". You feel guilty for making something of yourself and you feel guilty for not feeling tied to people that you used to know or even your own family. It is definitely a double edged sword.

The settings of Hawaii and Indonesia came very much alive when President Obama was reliving his childhood in both places. He has a very deft way of describing people and places that worked for this memoir. The parts of the book that dealt with his Kenyan family were sad in a lot of places. You get to read more about his father and ultimately the strained relationships among some of the relatives and you get more understanding about Kenya and how marriages worked in that country during that time. I say during that time but for all I know that is still the way that marriages work now.

The ending though I felt was a little abrupt. I am very glad that I read this book and would recommend to anyone wanting to know more about President Obama. ( )
  ObsidianBlue | Jul 1, 2020 |
Obviously I wouldn't have read this had Obama not run for President, though I might have read it even if he had lost. As a piece of literature, it's perhaps overwritten and could stand from a 50-page reduction. But as insight into the mind of our President written before he was anybody at all, it gives me heart that Obama thinks, that he understands that problems of race and class, in this country and elsewhere, aren't easy, but they are problems. The book gives me heart. ( )
  wearyhobo | Jun 22, 2020 |
Surprisingly well-written, especially by somebody who at the time he wrote it was not particularly well-known. ( )
  richardSprague | Mar 22, 2020 |
I wanted to enjoy Obama's memoir, especially after Becoming's adorable description of Obama running off to try to finish it... but it was a slog. I have a suspicion this book rests only on the glow of its incredibly impressive author, because to me it is only an average book, seemingly focused more on introspection than on engaging others. That's fine, of course, but it's also a grim reckoning against the height of my expectations. ( )
  pammab | Sep 25, 2019 |
Dreams from my Father

I Picked Up This Book Because: Curiosity? I think mostly I wanted to get to know Michelle’s other half.

Mr Obama has had a varied and well traveled life. He has experienced many cultures and taken advantage of the knowledge gained. While I feel like I learned a lot about his past I don’t feel like this book changed the way I see him. It was personal without being personal. I know that makes no sense but that’s the best way I can describe it.

The Random Thoughts:

3 Stars ( )
  bookjunkie57 | Jul 16, 2019 |
Showing 1-5 of 175 (next | show all)
All men live in the shadow of their fathers -- the more distant the father, the deeper the shadow. Barack Obama describes his confrontation with this shadow in his provocative autobiography, "Dreams From My Father," and he also persuasively describes the phenomenon of belonging to two different worlds, and thus belonging to neither.
 

» Add other authors (17 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Obama, BarackAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Zwart, JoostTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
"For we are strangers before them, and sojourners, as were all our fathers. I Chronicles 29:15.
Dedication
First words
A few months after my twenty-first birthday, a stranger called to give me the news.
Quotations
They are NOT my people.

(No quotation marks.)

Pg. 47

Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Publisher series
Information from the French Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Original language
Information from the French Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Canonical DDC/MDS

No library descriptions found.

Book description
Haiku summary

Quick Links

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (3.91)
0.5 1
1 14
1.5 2
2 59
2.5 17
3 290
3.5 89
4 648
4.5 80
5 356

Canongate Books

4 editions of this book were published by Canongate Books.

Editions: 1847670911, 1847670946, 1847674380, 1847673287

Penguin Australia

3 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 1921351438, 1921520620, 1921520515

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 147,917,756 books! | Top bar: Always visible