The final leg of the presidential race begins at the end of this month, after the Republican National Convention. Perhaps in these last days before the candidates must focus almost exclusively on campaigning, President Obama and presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney will have some extra time to read.
We hope so. Because 14 authors and journalists have provided their book recommendations to the candidates. Our advisors include Jonathan Alter, who wrote the presidential biography "The Promise: President Obama, Year One"; Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Jane Smiley; Isabel Wilkerson, whose history of the African American diaspora in the 20th century, "The Warmth of Other Suns," was seen last year among Obama's book purchases; Fox News contributor and radio host Monica Crowley; and Juan Felipe Herrera, California's poet laureate.
See the complete list of recommendations. A sample is below.
Sherman Alexie, novelist and winner of the National Book Award: For Mitt Romney, Emily Dickinson's "Collected Poems," so he'd learn that faith and doubt are fraternal twins. For President Obama, a dictionary so that he could look up the definition of "progressive."
From Douglas Brinkley, author of several biographies, including 2012's "Cronkite": Steve Coll's "Private Empire." A penetrating investigative exposé on the philosophy of Exxon Mobil (the largest, most powerful oil and gas company in America). The mask of Big Oil is ripped off in this outstanding hybrid of journalism and history.