In Barack Obama, David Maraniss has written a sweeping narrative which reveals the real story of Obama's beginnings: child of a black man from Luoland and a white woman born in Texas. He charts the fortunes of the two disparate families, polar opposites in every way, which produced these two extraordinary individuals, who met briefly in Hawaii, never cohabited, and married only to legitimize the child born of that union. At the heart of Obama's psyche and his political beliefs - and therefore his presidency - is his life-long struggle to understand the extreme duality of his identity. Barack Obama contains a wealth of new material. Maraniss reveals here previously unpublished love letters written by Obama as a young man in a search of an identity: black or white, writer or a man who could lead.