Former first lady Michelle Obama has been on a nationwide tour for her New York Times best-selling book, Becoming, for months. Ahead of her appearance at the Moda Center on Tuesday night, the author stopped by a Portland’s Broadway Books to meet with a women’s book club.
KGW-TV’s Pat Dooris posted video footage from the event on Facebook. Obama encouraged the book club members to tell their story. “I also realize how rare it was for a woman, relatively young, who is a minority who is high profile—how rare it is that she gets to tell her own story in a way that millions will read.”
Sharing the inspiration behind her decision to tell her life story in Becoming, Obama added, “I wanted to tell it. I didn’t want to tell what was expected. I wanted to tell it all. Because I felt like having it out there… I knew my story wasn’t unique. I knew it was going to resonate.”
Kim Bissell and Sally McPherson, owners of the Northeast Portland bookstore, shared their excitement over Obama’s appearance with the The Oregonian. “The hardest part was keeping it a secret.”
McPherson told the local newspaper she was asked to find an established book club to meet the former first lady. The owners selected one whose members were young women with diverse backgrounds whom they felt “would represent us well.”
Obama made a lasting impact on the crowd during Tuesday’s appearance. According to The Oregonian, “The evening felt like a greatest-hits collection of the book’s anecdotes but made fresh with Obama’s wry commentary.”
The former first lady has made a point of meeting with community members, hospital patients, community activists and book clubs on each stop of her tour.
Obama was originally scheduled to appear in Portland in January, but she was forced to reschedule due to inclement weather.
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Jasmine Washington is a beauty-obsessed journalist by day and a trap music connoisseur by night. A lifelong New Yorker, she got her start as an intern at the now-defunct Juicy Magazine. Jasmine joined the EBONY.com team as a writer, penning daily stories on all things Black culture and entertainment.