Obama's summer reading assignments

Even the commander in chief reads over break

President Barack Obama's summer reading list dropped last week, comprising a variety of genres and styles. 

As in the past, the White House released Obama's book list as the first family vacations in Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts. This year it includes a mix of fiction, nonfiction, thrillers, a Pulitzer Prize winner, and an Oprah's Book Club selection.

Barbarian Days: A Surfing Life by William Finnegan

The 2016 Pulitzer Prize winner for biography/autobiography traces the author's love for surfing throughout his life.

The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead

Recently selected by Oprah's Book Club, the novel tells a story of a woman's escape from a Georgia cotton plantation.

H is for Hawk by Helen Macdonald

Macdonald won the 2014 Costa Book of the Year Award as well as the Samuel Johnson Prize for this work, which focuses on the year she spent training a hawk after her father died.

The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

This mystery thriller tells the story of three women whose lives intertwine.

Seveneves by Neal Stephenson

Another thriller, this science fiction work imagines the attempt to preserve human society after a series of apocalyptic events (Garunay, "Blog," White House, 8/12; AP/San Francisco Gate, 8/13). 

Remind your students to finish their summer reading—and all the other things they need to do

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