You've probably heard the raves already, and my view is no different: this book deserves all the accolades it's been getting. I listened to Michelle Obama narrate the audio version of Becoming, and it is worth the hefty commitment (at 19+ hours--though you can comfortably speed up the pace a bit). Obama is an excellent writer who tells small but compelling stories of her youth on the south side of Chicago, her years elite universities and as a fledgling lawyer, and her life with Barack Obama--before, during, and immediately after the White House.
She is highly relatable--focused on her kids, muddling through the ups and downs of motherhood, and indulging in HGTV over political roundtables. Knowing her rarefied educational and professional background, I found her distaste for political life surprising and--again--relatable. Certain memories prompted tears, for different reasons: inauguration night, Newtown, and the 2016 election results, especially. The pressure they were under as the first black presidential family was enormous, and she conducted herself with a grace and dignity that I believe few can match.
This post may include affiliate links. That means if you click and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Please see Disclosures for more information.
An intimate, powerful, and inspiring memoir by the former First Lady of the United States
In a life filled with meaning and accomplishment, Michelle Obama has emerged as one of the most iconic and compelling women of our era. As First Lady of the United States of America—the first African American to serve in that role—she helped create the most welcoming and inclusive White House in history, while also establishing herself as a powerful advocate for women and girls in the U.S. and around the world, dramatically changing the ways that families pursue healthier and more active lives, and standing with her husband as he led America through some of its most harrowing moments. Along the way, she showed us a few dance moves, crushed Carpool Karaoke, and raised two down-to-earth daughters under an unforgiving media glare.
In her memoir, a work of deep reflection and mesmerizing storytelling, Michelle Obama invites readers into her world, chronicling the experiences that have shaped her—from her childhood on the South Side of Chicago to her years as an executive balancing the demands of motherhood and work, to her time spent at the world’s most famous address. With unerring honesty and lively wit, she describes her triumphs and her disappointments, both public and private, telling her full story as she has lived it—in her own words and on her own terms. Warm, wise, and revelatory, Becoming is the deeply personal reckoning of a woman of soul and substance who has steadily defied expectations—and whose story inspires us to do the same.