PRH tight-lipped on Obama delay report

PRH tight-lipped on Obama delay report

Penguin Random House has declined to make any public comment on a press report that Barack Obama’s post-White House memoir has been pushed back until 2020.

At the Bertelsmann annual results press conference in March, PRH c.e.o. Markus Dohle reiterated that he "hoped" the book would be out this autumn, following up on the stellar success of Michelle Obama's Becoming, released in 2018. But according to the Associated Press, PRH started alerting foreign partners and others yesterday (Tuesday 7th May) that the book has now been pushed back until next year. This could mean it could land during the 2020 US Presidential campaign, although AP reported that PRH had given no updates on a launch date.

A spokesperson for Penguin Random House US declined to comment on the report to The Bookseller.

The former president has been writing the book himself, handwriting a first draft on legal pads, the same technique he used for numerous White House speeches and his first bestseller, Dreams from My Father (Canongate), AP said in its report.

The former president and his wife, Michelle Obama, both signed with PRH in 2017 in a deal reported to have topped $65m (£52.5m). Michelle Obama’s memoir, Becoming, has quickly become one of the most popular political memoirs in history, with more than 10 million copies sold worldwide. PRH c.e.o. Markus Dohle said that sales for Becoming had "exceeded our wildest expectations" and that the book could become a modern classic.

Earlier this month, the former First Couple unveiled their first string of productions for Netflix which includes a project with author Michael Lewis.