Former U.S. President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama have signed a joint book deal to release their both memoirs via Penguin Random House, the publisher announced Tuesday night.
The package deal had been subject to a bidding war between various top publishing houses in recent weeks.
The Financial Times reports that Penguin Random House paid an excess of $65 million for memoirs by both Obamas. The publisher declined to comment, however, the FT said.
Michelle Obama and former U.S. president Barack Obama wave to supporters as daughter Malia looks on after the president delivered his farewell address in Chicago, Illinois, January 10. The Obamas have signed a book deal worth over $65 million, it's reported. NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty
That figure would eclipse the amount earned by fellow former presidents for their memoirs after departing the White House. According to The New York Times, Bill Clinton’s My Life pocketed him over $10 million, while George W. Bush’s Decision Points sold for an estimated $10 million.
Penguin Random House published President Obama’s three previous books, Dreams From My Father (1995), The Audacity of Hope (2006) and children’s book Of Thee I Sing (2010). Crown, an imprint of Penguin Random House, also published Michelle Obama’s 2012 healthy-eating guide, American Grown.
“We are absolutely thrilled to continue our publishing partnership with President and Mrs. Obama,” said the publishing house’s CEO Markus Dohle in a statement. “With their words and their leadership, they changed the world, and every day, with the books we publish at Penguin Random House, we strive to do the same. Now, we are very much looking forward to working together with President and Mrs. Obama to make each of their books global publishing events of unprecedented scope and significance.”
There is no set release date for the two memoirs, but industry magazine Publishers Weekly reports a fall 2018 release is rumored.
As part of the deal with the Obamas, Penguin Random House has pledged to donate one million books to First Book, a U.S. nonprofit organization that provides books to disadvantaged children.Try Newsweek: Subscription offers