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Publisher's Summary

A riveting, deeply personal account of history in the making - from the president who inspired us to believe in the power of democracy.

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 listeners 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 4th 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 US partisan politics and international diplomacy. Obama brings listeners 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 US strategy in Afghanistan, tackles Wall Street reform, responds to the devastating Deepwater Horizon blowout and authorises 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 organiser 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.

©2020 Barack Obama (P)2020 Penguin Audio

What listeners say about A Promised Land

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My review

I was worried about the length, but I was hooked from the beginning! It was interesting to hear what he was thinking. He was not afraid to share his mistakes. He responded to critics with respect and tried to see their point of view. This was an amazing read and I'm so glad he shared this story.

22 people found this helpful

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Fantastic

This was an absolutely captivating and brutally honest account, made that much better by Obama reading it.

16 people found this helpful

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Genuinely down to earth peaceful person.

Obama’s experience, struggles, thoughts, and hopes in some of the grand decisions, he made through out of his first couple of years, as the President of USA. This collaborative, thoughtful narrative is rich with his own writing and his voice for 29 hours. Even if you have no interest much politics you will be gravitate to this book from start to end - guaranteed!

12 people found this helpful

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long winded and boring

I was really looking forward to this book but couldn't finish it, the most boring long winded recollection of his life in politics.
not what I was hopping for.

10 people found this helpful

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Beacon!

If just a handful more people could become like this man - an ordinary boy who grabbed every opportunity he could find to help the world become a better place and will never stop working and applying his extraordinary and accumlating skills, determination, analysis, subtelty and judgement to that end until his final breath. Amazing book. Will listen again and again for the layers of insights.

5 people found this helpful

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i enjoyed every minute!

what great stories coming from the horse's mouth! the presidents narration added authenticity and it felt like he was just there telling you his stories.

5 people found this helpful

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Barack Obama, the best of the best.

A really fascinating insight into the workings of the White House and of American politics.

4 people found this helpful

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Never sick of listening to Barack!

This is a captivating tale and certainly better with writer doing the reading with inflection!

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Yawn...

Waaay too much detail on policy. Every decision he made has been recounted. I found myself skipping ahead through much of the second half. It could have been half as long for 95% of the population, though I understand his desire to want to put his entire perspective on the record and it's worth doing...though it's not worth listening to.

2 people found this helpful

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great title

Good title!!!! I will recommend this to my co worker. Good title!!!! I will recommend this to my co worker.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Sean Rodrigues
  • 17-11-2020

Sean R in Tokyo

Only a few chapters in.
Feels like a return to almost mythical times. Thoughtful, intelligent, respectful and...sane.

12 people found this helpful

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  • Avasmum
  • 29-11-2020

Brilliant autobiography

I am not usually a fan of autobiographies but this one is excellent. I wasn't sure what 'tone' to expect but Obama sets a peaceful, considerate, and slightly humorous voice. I usually listen to books at 1.5x to 1.8x and I thought I'd have to run Obama's book at 2x because he talks so slowly but 1x has been just right.

I think anyone with an open mind would enjoy this book.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 24-11-2020

Can you ever choke in listening to a politician?

I am amazed by the balance of thoughts he has . Neither Left nor the Right sway him. His painful acknowledgment of compromises without ever having to justify his decisions is more striking . An awesome listening experience after a long time

3 people found this helpful

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  • Karl
  • 01-12-2020

Modern History

Informative, insightful, funny and at the very least he could earn a living as an audio narrator.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Tamuka Makotore
  • 27-01-2021

Can Volume 2 be released already!?

Well written, and well read. Touched on so mamy topics from the time he ran for president, to the time Bin Laden was killed. Although some topics were a bit cumbersome, it really helped that Obizy was the one reading the book. Key lesson i learnt is about surrounding yourself with the right people. We saw saw this from when he ran for office, and to the time he was president, how instrumental his team was.

Looking forward to Volume 2. Can i pre-order!?

1 person found this helpful

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  • Sridhar
  • 26-11-2020

Masterpiece of a memoir. What a treat!

Amazing ring-side view of the major events that shaped the world during first term of President Obama. Gives a glimpse of the mind and heart of one of the greatest Presidents of the USA. It's even a bigger treat to listen to him read the book himself. Can't wait for the second volume to come out!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Marc Dimmick
  • 14-04-2021

inspirational story of achievement

loved it and gained a better understanding of the american psykee. would highly recommend to anyone.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 30-03-2021

perfectly done.

loved it!!!!♥️ one of the best books on audible..will defiantly listen again. also soothing to listen to.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 27-03-2021

Exceptional. What a narration!

It was a privilege to hear the narration from the POTUS himself. Many passages touched deep within and made eyes moist.
Thanks to all those involved in bringing this to us.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 22-03-2021

Insightful!

Listening to Obama explain the careful deliberation that went into each and every decision he made, as well as the difficulty in dealing with other nations, his staff and worst of all the politics of congress and senate, made me realise how powerless the POTUS can sometimes be.

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  • jesse
  • 17-11-2020

Dropping a classic

History will look upon you favourably sir. You're an icon of your generation, I thank you for everything you represent.

105 people found this helpful

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  • Joseph K
  • 18-11-2020

Breath of fresh air

Must read if you need your faith in politics restored especially after the last 4 years.

95 people found this helpful

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  • jessik
  • 19-11-2020

Beautiful

Beautifully written, beautifully read. Listening to Obama speak again is truly calming in this chaotic world. A wonderful human, with such heart and optimism and still, so much joy. Even after having to leave all his hard work for that awful orange monster. My family immigrated to America in 2001 holding onto the American dream. I still believe the America in this book and in Obama’s heart, is possible. Hopefully Joe and Kamala will help point us in the right direction again. Xx

78 people found this helpful

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  • cara louise beckett
  • 19-11-2020

Bloody fantastic!!

I am 12 chapters in and already in mourning because it will come to an end. You won't regret purchasing; it is enlightening, comforting, heartbreaking and fortifying - exactly what a 2020 weary soul needs

52 people found this helpful

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  • Dan
  • 22-11-2020

Too long and bit boring at timew

The first part is interesting but then it gets boring. For anyone has been following the news during the Obama years, there isnt much new in this book and you didn’t know. Obama doesn’t reveal much about him, its more a list of policy achievements, and 29 hours of audio or more 700 pages to describe less than 3 years of presidency is too much. I love Obama, and his previous books. But this one is a bit disappointing, but still worth a read.

42 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 20-11-2020

Frank

The most satisfying aspect of this book is its frankness about the broken, corrupt parts of the American political system. It reveals the distance between Obama's ideals and what was actually possible politically in the world as it is.

39 people found this helpful

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  • S. Langford
  • 21-11-2020

Outstanding!

I’m six chapters in and this book is outstanding. Such brilliant narration! So articulated in his writing and delivery. Such an incredible story of hard work and personal sacrifice. All the humility and good grace you would expect to hear. Start it, you won’t regret it! I’m from the UK and I’m learning so much about the US political system but not in a heavy way. It’s honestly enthralling. Highly recommend listening to this book.

35 people found this helpful

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  • Abra Brash
  • 19-11-2020

What a wonderful human being..... brilliant read

Barak Obama will forever be a treasure to America and other world leaders alike. Sadly he has run his presidency but if this in depth memoir is anything to go by and the timing of its release, it can be an aid to the new president elect (Biden) as a comprehensive refresher. Maybe the satsuma shaded runner up could of done with this book at the start of his inauguration. God bless Biden for tidying that orange mess and god bless America 🇺🇸

32 people found this helpful

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  • paulthomas
  • 21-11-2020

Blown away

Completely blown away , every aspect of this book is compelling . I must say I’m slightly bias in that I think Obama was a great president, and statesman. But he’s a truly lovely human being.
He covers all aspect’s of his presidency, but gives us a front seat into how it actually was. But then it’s a love letter to his wife. I’m on chapter 13, thank god it's almost 30 hours.

22 people found this helpful

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  • Jake lewis
  • 19-11-2020

In-depth

An in-depth first hand account from one of the best known names in the world. From his early years to the end of his first 3 years in the white house. This is a great reflection on the history of Ameroca

22 people found this helpful

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