Jon Meacham has a nice article in the NYTimes about what different Presidents in the past have preferred for their reading material. What fiction and non-fiction literature they prefer.
While some of the titles differ and some of the same between Obama and McCain, Meacham notes a similarity between their choices in terms of a "tragic sensibility." I was happy to see some titles from Columbia's Core Curriculum, in which I teach Literature Humanities, on Obama's list...such as King Lear, which definitely fits that "tragic sensibility."
See the article here.