An auction for rights to books by Barack and Michelle Obama has set a new record for U.S. presidential memoirs, according to a report by the Financial Times.
The auction has reached more than $60 million, the Financial Times reported, citing unnamed sources with knowledge of the sales process. The Obamas are writing separate books but selling the global rights jointly.
Since leaving office, Barack Obama went on vacation in the British Virgin Islands, where billionaire Richard Branson challenged him to a kite surfing duel.
One of President Donald Trump’s pet conspiracy theories regarding his predecessor was that former Weather Underground member Bill Ayers actually wrote Obama’s 1995 book Dreams From My Father.
“Bill Ayers wrote the book,” Trump claimed in 2011. “And, you know, I wrote many best sellers, and also, number one bestsellers including The Art of the Deal. So I know something about writing.”
Ayers responded multiple times to that allegation by joking that he did write the book, and wants some royalties.
Trump’s ghostwriter for The Art of the Deal, on the other hand, told the New Yorker in 2016 that he “put lipstick on a pig” by presenting Trump in a flattering light.
Asked what he would name the book today, ghostwriter Tony Schwartz told the New Yorker: “The Sociopath.”