This fall, Michelle Obama will release a book called “The Light We Carry” in which she reflects on her experiences and gives advice for living in a world that is getting more and more stressful.
It’s the former first lady’s first completely original work since the publication of her critically acclaimed blockbuster “Becoming” in 2018. That book has sold more than 17 million copies worldwide, surpassing the sales of any memoir by a previous first lady or modern president, including her husband, former President Barack Obama.
“I’ve learned it’s okay to recognize that self-worth comes wrapped in vulnerability and that what we share as humans on this earth is the impulse to strive for better, always and no matter what,” Michelle Obama writes in the book’s introduction, included in Thursday’s announcement by the Random House Publishing Group and its imprint Crown.
“We become bolder in brightness. If you know your light, you know yourself. You know your own story in an honest way. In my experience, this type of self-knowledge builds confidence, which in turn breeds calmness and an ability to maintain perspective, which leads, finally, to be able to connect meaningfully with others — and this to me is the bedrock of all things.”
The new book is not a part of the reportedly eight-figure memoir deal Obama had with parent company Penguin Random House in 2017, shortly after he left office. A spokesman declined to comment on “The Light We Carry’s” financial details according to Variety
Almost exactly four years after the publication of “Becoming,” Crown will issue the 336-page book on November 15 and has announced the first printing of 2.75 million copies for the U.S. and Canada. With more rights deals expected, “The Light We Carry: Overcoming in Uncertain Times” will be released simultaneously in 14 languages and 27 countries.
“In ‘The Light We Carry,’ Mrs. Obama offers readers a series of fresh stories and insightful reflections on change, challenge, and power, including her belief that when we light up for others, we can illuminate the richness and potential of the world around us, discovering deeper truths and new pathways for progress,” the publisher’s announcement reads in part.
“Drawing from her experiences as a mother, daughter, spouse, friend, and First Lady, she shares the habits and principles she has developed to successfully adapt to change and overcome various obstacles — the earned wisdom that helps her continue to ‘become.’”
The $10,000 Michelle Obama Award for Memoir, part of an awards program for public high school students that Penguin Random House started in 1993, was renamed in her honor on Thursday, according to an announcement made by the company.
Michelle Obama has created a version of “Becoming” for younger readers and started a podcast since finishing it. She has collaborated with Barack Obama and their production company Higher Ground on a number of pursuits, including the Oscar-winning documentary “American Factory” and a documentary about her “Becoming” tour, during which she made appearances at venues across the country while being interviewed by Oprah Winfrey and Sarah Jessica Parker. Plans for “The Light We Carry” promotions will be revealed later.
Barack Obama, a million-selling author himself, has been published by Crown for a very long period. The first of his two projected presidential memoirs, “A Promised Land,” was published in 2020. Concerning the publication date of the next book, a spokesperson declined to say.