Lead Story West Edition

MICHELLE OBAMA, REVEALED: Former first lady to speak at Forum

By Michael Livingston

Contributing Writer

INGLEWOOD — Michelle Obama will discuss her memoir, “Becoming,” at the Forum Nov. 15 as part of a 10-city tour.

In the 426-page book that was released Nov. 13, the former first lady reminisces about growing up on the South Side of Chicago, life in the White House, her marriage to former President Barack Obama, her thoughts about the 2016 presidential election and more.

“In this book, I talk about my roots and how a little girl from the South Side of Chicago found her voice and developed the strength to use it to empower others,” Obama said in a news release earlier this year. “I hope my journey inspires readers to find the courage to become whoever they aspire to be.”

“Black-ish” actress Tracee Ellis Ross will moderate the discussion at the Forum.

Eso Won Books in Leimert Park held a day-long event Nov. 13, serving breakfast and brunch to shoppers who stopped in to pick up a copy of the book on the first day it was available.

In a wide-ranging interview with Robin Roberts on ABC’s “20/20” released Nov. 12, Obama revealed that she had a miscarriage around 20 years ago. Her daughters, Malia and Sasha, were conceived through in vitro fertilization.

“I felt lost and alone and I felt like I failed because I didn’t know how common miscarriages were because we don’t talk about them,” Obama said in the interview. “We sit in our own pain, thinking that somehow we’re broken.”

 

Obama also spoke about her marriage and being in the spotlight. She grappled with the idea of a black man one day leading a nation with a history of racism and discrimination toward African-Americans.

“It’s hard to believe that the country that oppressed you could one day be led by you,” Obama said in the interview.

Obama saw that ugliness re-emerge as President Donald Trump spent years promoting the “birther” movement, questioning the citizenship of her husband.

She said she will “never forgive” President Trump for his bigoted remarks. Obama worried that Trump’s claims would entice birther supporters to harm her family.

Trump responded to Obama last week, brushing off her comments as fodder to sell books.

“She got paid a lot of money to write a book and they always expect a little controversy,” Trump said about Obama’s memoir to reporters last week.

With the country’s current political climate tense with drama, fans of the former first lady urged her to throw her hat in the political circus, to which Obama objected.

“I have no intention of running for office, ever,” Obama states in the book, according to an excerpt obtained from the Wall Street Journal. “I’ve never been a fan of politics, and my experience over the last 10 years has done little to change that.”

The book is expected to dominate the bestsellers list. Oprah Winfrey has already placed it on her book club’s list.

“I’ve known Michelle for 14 years, but this book is so vulnerable, I felt like she was in my ear,” Winfrey tweeted about the book.

The book tour concludes next month.