Penguin Random House announced Tuesday that it has signed both Barack and Michelle Obama to book deals.
The publishing giant, in a news release, said it will publish “forthcoming books” by the former president and first lady, but gave very few details.
According to a report in the Financial Times, bidding for the two books topped $60 million and multiple publishers were in the hunt. The former president made no secret of the fact that he planned to write a book when he left office, admitting as much to David Axelrod on CNN.
Imprints of Penguin Random have published other books by the Obamas, including Michelle Obama’s best-selling cookbook, American Grown.
The former president, of course, has written previous best sellers, including the memoir Dreams From My Father and The Audacity of Hope, both top 10 USA TODAY best sellers.
Most recent presidents have written memoirs when they leave office, including George W. Bush and Bill Clinton. Bush’s Decision Points and Clinton’s My Life were No. 1 USA TODAY best sellers.
In a statement, Penguin Random House CEO Markus Dohle said: "We are absolutely thrilled to continue our publishing partnership with President and Mrs. Obama. With their words and their leadership, they changed the world, and every day, with the books we publish at Penguin Random House, we strive to do the same. Now, we are very much looking forward to working together with President and Mrs. Obama to make each of their books global publishing events of unprecedented scope and significance."
The publishing company also said it would donate 1 million books in the Obama family’s name to First Book, a Penguin Random House non-profit partner and the Washington-based partner for the 2016 White House digital education initiative, Open eBooks.
The announcement came just hours before President Donald Trump was set to address Congress.