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Obama photographer Pete Souza bringing 'Shade' to Miami Book Fair

In 2017, Pete Souza published “Obama: An Intimate Portrait,” a book that included more than 300 photos from his years working as chief official White House photographer for President Barack Obama. The book reached No. 1 on the New York Times’ bestseller list, a feat repeated by Souza’s latest book, “Shade: A Tale of Two Presidents.”

Like its predecessor, “Shade” features Souza’s photos from the Obama White House, though these shots are drawn from the photographer’s popular Instagram account, where, as the book’s title suggests, he uses them to take digs at the current occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

The book covers the first 500 days of the Trump presidency, and Souza posted each photo to Instagram in response to a Trump tweet. “This started soon after the inauguration,” Souza says by phone from Chicago, where he was a staff photographer at the Chicago Tribune before going to work for Obama in Washington, D.C.

“Shade” pairs Souza’s photos with their corresponding tweets, though the original Instagram posts don’t directly address them. “People told me how they used to go back and try to match my post to Trump’s tweets,” says Souza, who will promote “Shade” Nov. 14 at the Miami Book Fair. “It would help them get through the day, the week, the month.”

Souza also served as the official photographer for President Ronald Reagan. “There is no comparison,” he says. “I’m confident in saying Reagan would be appalled by Trump. I still have lots of friends from the Reagan administration who agree with me.”

Souza adds, “With Trump, what you see is a reality-show president. What’s happening now is just not the U.S.A. as we know it. With Obama, we had a good person in the White House. People respected Obama, even those who did not agree with his policies. The current occupant is like a carnival barker.”

“The presidency doesn’t change who you are,” Souza says, quoting Michelle Obama. “It reveals who you are.”

Pete Souza will appear 6 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 14, at the Miami Book Fair at the Chapman Conference Center (Building 3, second floor, Room 3210) on the Wolfson campus of Miami Dade College, 300 NE Second Ave., in Miami. Tickets cost $40 and include a copy of “Shade: A Tale of Two Presidents.” Go to MiamiBookFair.com.

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