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Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images

In a Facebook post Sunday morning, former President Barack Obama shared five books that he's been reading this summer "when things slow down just a bit, whether it’s on a vacation with family or just a quiet afternoon."

The big picture: Obama, who's known to share his favorite bits of art via social media, said that he's "been absorbed by new novels, revisited an old classic, and reaffirmed my faith in our ability to move forward together when we seek the truth."

  • Educated by Tara Westover: "A remarkable memoir of a young woman raised in a survivalist family in Idaho who strives for education while still showing great understanding and love for the world she leaves behind."
  • Warlight by Michael Ondaatje: "A meditation on the lingering effects of war on family."
  • A House for Mr. Biswas by V.S. Naipaul, which Obama said he reread after the author's recent passing: "The Nobel Prize winner's first great novel about growing up in Trinidad and the challenge of post-colonial identity."
  • An American Marriage by Tayari Jones: "A moving portrayal of the effects of a wrongful conviction on a young African-American couple."
  • Factfulness by Hans Rosling: "A hopeful book about the potential for human progress when we work off facts rather than our inherent biases."

Go deeper

15 mins ago - World

European countries extend lockdowns

A medical worker takes a COVID-19 throat swab sample at the Berlin-Brandenburg Airport. Photo by Maja Hitij via Getty

Recent spikes in COVID-19 infections across Europe have led authorities to extend restrictions ahead of the holiday season.

Why it matters: "Relaxing too fast and too much is a risk for a third wave after Christmas," said European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.

1 hour ago - Health

Africa CDC: Vaccines likely won't be available until Q2 of 2021

Africa CDC director Dr. John Nkengasong. Photo: Mohammed Abdu Abdulbaqi/Anadolu Agency via Getty

Africa may have to wait until the second quarter of 2021 to roll out vaccines, Africa CDC director John Nkengasong said Thursday, according to the Associated Press.

Why it matters: “I have seen how Africa is neglected when drugs are available,” Nkengasong said.

Erica Pandey, author of @Work
3 hours ago - Economy & Business

The winners and losers of the pandemic holiday season

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The pandemic has upended Thanksgiving and the shopping season that the holiday kicks off, creating a new crop of economic winners and losers.

The big picture: Just as it has exacerbated inequality in every other facet of American life, the coronavirus pandemic is deepening inequities in the business world, with the biggest and most powerful companies rapidly outpacing the smaller players.