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Pub Day Shout-Outs! December 22, 2020 Special Edition

by Sara Voigt (@meaningfulmadness)


As we move toward the holidays and the end of the year, there are not many books coming out this week. I wanted to use this as an opportunity to highlight a few of my most anticipated reads that have appeared in our pub day shout-outs!


book cover of Barack Obama's A Promised Land

Barack Obama's A Promised Land


Description from Publisher:

"In the stirring, highly anticipated first volume of his presidential memoirs, Barack Obama tells the story of his improbable odyssey from young man searching for his identity to leader of the free world, describing in strikingly personal detail both his political education and the landmark moments of the first term of his historic presidency—a time of dramatic transformation and turmoil.


"Obama takes readers on a compelling journey from his earliest political aspirations to the pivotal Iowa caucus victory that demonstrated the power of grassroots activism to the watershed night of November 4, 2008, when he was elected 44th president of the United States, becoming the first African American to hold the nation’s highest office.


"Reflecting on the presidency, he offers a unique and thoughtful exploration of both the awesome reach and the limits of presidential power, as well as singular insights into the dynamics of U.S. partisan politics and international diplomacy. Obama brings readers inside the Oval Office and the White House Situation Room, and to Moscow, Cairo, Beijing, and points beyond. We are privy to his thoughts as he assembles his cabinet, wrestles with a global financial crisis, takes the measure of Vladimir Putin, overcomes seemingly insurmountable odds to secure passage of the Affordable Care Act, clashes with generals about U.S. strategy in Afghanistan, tackles Wall Street reform, responds to the devastating Deepwater Horizon blowout, and authorizes Operation Neptune’s Spear, which leads to the death of Osama bin Laden.


"A Promised Land is extraordinarily intimate and introspective—the story of one man’s bet with history, the faith of a community organizer tested on the world stage. Obama is candid about the balancing act of running for office as a Black American, bearing the expectations of a generation buoyed by messages of “hope and change,” and meeting the moral challenges of high-stakes decision-making. He is frank about the forces that opposed him at home and abroad, open about how living in the White House affected his wife and daughters, and unafraid to reveal self-doubt and disappointment. Yet he never wavers from his belief that inside the great, ongoing American experiment, progress is always possible.


"This beautifully written and powerful book captures Barack Obama’s conviction that democracy is not a gift from on high but something founded on empathy and common understanding and built together, day by day."


Why I want to read it:

I love a memoir. And I love Barack Obama. So, that should be enough. Also former President Obama reads the audiobook, so I am definitely going to listen to the audiobook. I love a memoir read by the author. That is my favorite. (Also, smiling. Smiling is also my favorite. (High five for an Elf reference.))

Adib Khorram's Darius the Great Deserves Better


Description from Publisher:

"In this companion to the award-winning Darius the Great Is Not Okay, Darius suddenly has it all: a boyfriend, an internship, a spot on the soccer team. It’s everything he’s ever wanted–but what if he deserves better?

"Darius Kellner is having a bit of a year. Since his trip to Iran this past spring, a lot has changed. He’s getting along with his dad, and his best friend Sohrab is only a Skype call away. Between his first boyfriend, Landon, his varsity soccer practices, and his internship at his favorite tea shop, Darius is feeling pretty okay. Like he finally knows what it means to be Darius Kellner.


"Then, of course, everything changes. Darius’s grandmothers are in town for a long visit while his dad is gone on business, and Darius isn’t sure whether they even like him. The internship isn’t what Darius thought it would be, and now he doesn’t know about turning tea into his career. He was sure he liked Landon, but when he starts hanging out with Chip–soccer teammate and best friend of Trent Bolger, epic bully–well, he’s just not so sure about Landon anymore, either.

"Darius thought he knew exactly who he was and what he wanted, but maybe he was wrong. Maybe he deserves better."


Why I want to read it:

I just finished Darius the Great Is Not Okay for our January buddy read, and I loved it. I cannot wait to dive into the second novel. I am so excited to see what Khorram has in store for Darius.

book cover of Kelly Yang's Three Keys

Kelly Yang's Three Keys


Description from Publisher:

"The story of Mia and her family and friends at the Calivista Motel continues in this powerful, hilarious, and resonant sequel to the award-winning novel Front Desk.


"Mia Tang thinks she's going to have the best year ever.


"She and her parents are the proud owners of the Calivista Motel, Mia gets to run the front desk with her best friend, Lupe, and she's finally getting somewhere with her writing!


"But as it turns out, sixth grade is no picnic...

1. Mia's new teacher doesn't think her writing is all that great. And her entire class finds out she lives and works in a motel!

2. The motel is struggling, and Mia has to answer to the Calivista's many, many worried investors.

3. A new immigration law is looming and if it passes, it will threaten everything—and everyone—in Mia's life.


"It's a roller coaster of challenges, and Mia needs all of her determination to hang on tight. But if anyone can find the key to getting through turbulent times, it's Mia Tang!"


Why I want to read it:

I adored Kelly Yang's Front Desk—it was one of the books we read for the Global Read Aloud a year or two ago (check out that episode, number 85). I loved Mia and cannot wait to see where her story goes!

#pubdayshoutouts #middlegrade #nonfiction #yalit #memoir

(A note to our readers: click on the hashtags above to see our other blog posts with the same hashtag.)


Interested in what else we're reading? Check out our Featured Books page.


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