Author: Allison Samuels
Publisher: Gotham Books
What Would Michelle Do? is a book by Allison Samuels of the life, upbringing and nuances of the U.S. First Lady, Michelle Robinson Obama. It is not a book written by Obama, but her supposed in-depth attitudes, attributes and thoughts, crafted through an expert writer’s eyes and ears along with knowledgeable resources.
This hard bound book has a pale lavender jacket cover with the First Lady smiling at the reader in her dark purple dress. The back jacket has two paragraphs about the book with no reviews. The inside front and back jacket briefly depict topics discussed along with a photograph of the writer and her short biography. The book is written in casual format with no obvious grammatical or typographical errors. Each chapter has a purple drawing of Michelle Obama at different stages of her life, which reminds the reader of Simplicity sewing pattern designs in the 1960s (young, too thin-waist Barbie-doll icons). Besides several fonts being used, the color purple highlights topics, special themes, tips or rules to remember.
This is virtually a self-help book for any woman who wants to excel, look or act like Michelle Obama. It breaks down to sections about the First Lady’s idealistic childhood, her feeling of self-worth, her close relationships with girlfriends, mother and husband, her beauty tips including hair, make-up and clothing, attitudes about exercising, finding a soul-mate, marriage challenges, and parenting along with entertaining. It is a step-by-step, topic-by-topic compilation to achieve grace, class, style, etc – everything that Michelle Obama emulates.
Although Samuels does not know Mrs. Obama personally, she writes based on her sources, research and publications and pulls it off fairly well. The author is cheerleader, tutor, advisor, and go-to person if one wants to idolize and be like the President’s wife. Several times you as the reader are comparing your own life, history, traits and beliefs to Obama, even when the topic does not mention the First Lady.
As per the author, the key to Obama’s success is her valued belief in being sane, organized and structured in all facets of life. This is seen throughout the book’s discussions of her upbringing and choices she makes for herself in regard to employment changes, selecting a spouse, better ways to parent and maintaining her public image. From hair wigs, make-up tips and types of shoes to protecting her morals or dealing with a weekend-only husband/father during early married life, Samuels applies her understanding of Michelle’s core beliefs and morals. Obama’s supposed favorite websites for clothes and make-up, Chicago restaurants, Facebook and texting tips, and home decoration along with favorite food recipes are included. There are several quotes from not only Obama but friends, teachers, stylist and others.
This book is an easy read and a perfect gift for the young woman entering adulthood or one in their twenties as it not only can help navigate, confirm and encourage maturity, grace, class and style in the reader, but also establish and ground her own beliefs, healthy attributes and realistic attitudes.
Posted May 2012: