Mr. and Mrs. Grassroots: How Barack Obama, Two Bookstore Owners, and 300 Volunteers Did It is a story about community, perseverance, encouragement, and dedication. Two independent bookstore owners, John Presta and his wife Michelle, began their long journey of support for Obama with the release of Obama's book, Dreams From My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance. Although the book sold poorly at first, eventually it (along with its author) began to move up in the world. "We never stopped believing in the book or the candidate," writes Presta. "The book and the candidate sold slowly, gradually, incrementally and,
then all in one swift moment, sold and resonated suddenly. Such was the rise of the book and of Barack Obama."
In Mr. and Mrs. Grassroots, we are given a touching, personal account of the trials of Barack Obama's early campaign. Presta continuously reminds us that "change comes slowly, gradually, incrementally, and suddenly," a unique and stark truth about the nature of not only the political arena, but our own lives as well.
While Presta maintains that he was by no means the make-or-break for Obama's success, community support such as the organization the Prestas and the many volunteers who joined them were the backbone of Obama's growth from the local to the national stage, and that without the support of communities and individuals like that, Obama would never have been able to achieve his presidential victory.
Mr. and Mrs. Grassroots is filled with comments and letters from friends and supporters, newspaper clips, photographs, and references to multiple other written works, and all are held together by a fantastic personal narrative that drops you right into the middle of Hyde Park, Chicago to watch the scene unfold with your own eyes. Presta's writing style is heartfelt and conversational, keeping you involved with the events as they unfold in a way that would have been difficult (if not impossible) if written from a different perspective.
To buy a copy of this compelling story, head to Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble (located in the Midland Mall), or check out a copy from your local library, Grace A. Dow of Midland. Currently, there is no ebook version available.
And of course, if you are ever in the Chicago Hyde Park area, be sure to stop in at Reading on Walden, John and Michelle Presta's bookstore where the fantastic tale began.