Melville House will publish the farewell speeches of former President Barack Obama and former First Lady Michelle Obama in trade paperback on March 28. The decision to publish the speeches stemmed from work done by Harvard Bookstore, which began printing the Obamas' farewell speeches in-store and on-demand shortly before the inauguration of President Donald J. Trump.
“It was such a great idea—both of the Obamas were such fabulous orators—that I called the store immediately and asked if we could go national with it,” Melville House co-publisher Dennis Johnson said in a statement. “Carole Horne and the team there were very gracious about it, for which I'm grateful,," Johnson explained. "These two speeches are so inspiring in the way they exemplify the best of American ideals that they're worth preserving and celebrating in a way that will be revisited and passed down through generations.”
Melville House's cover design will be based on Harvard Bookstore's POD design. In lieu of paying Harvard Bookstore, Melville House, by request, made a donation to the ACLU. "As a card-carrying member, I was happy to go along with that," Johnson said.