I wasn’t sure I wanted to write a review on the book, Fire and Fury, Inside the Trump White House written by Michael Wolff, published by Henry Holt and Company, New York. The United States is as divisive or more so than anytime in my lifetime and I didn’t want to add any fuel to the fire. Yet, I would like to give a little context about my political views as it may relate to my book review.
I was 18 years old when I voted for the Republican nominee, Ronald Reagan in 1980. Up to the minute I was in the polling booth, my intentions were to vote for the Democratic nominee, Jimmy Carter. As I stood there I realized I was making my first important, decision as an adult. I stood there what seemed longer than just a few minutes wavering on my decision. I remember it like it was yesterday. The Cold War was at its’ iciest in my teenage opinion.
And I asked myself, “Which candidate would be more likely to get us into a war?”
Could a Hollywood celebrity turn California governor handled the mounting foreign crisis’ better than a peanut farmer turned Georgia governor?
I wouldn’t view myself as a political junkie, but I do take each candidate and who I cast my vote very seriously.
I was a steadfastly opposed to both the Republican and Democrat nominees of the last presidential election. I did not vote for either of them. As a conservative independent, I instead voted for a third-party candidate. And I give you all this background on myself because as a reviewer I want you to know that my review is based upon the quality of writing and how the information is presented in Michael Wolff’s book, Fire and Fury.
The author, Michael Wolff
I did not know much about Michael Wolff prior to reading this book, however, I had heard whispers of his lacking journalistic credibility. How could I not? The book was on fire even before its debut and as it was being rushed to be published.
Mr. Wolff’s credentials from the book jacket reads in part: “Michael Wolff has received numerous awards for his work, including two National Magazine Awards. He has been a regular columnist for Vanity Fair, New York, The Hollywood Reporter, British GQ, USA Today, and The Guardian.” He has also written six prior books.
“Brilliantly reported and astoundingly fresh, Michael Wolff’s Fire and Fury show us why Donald Trump has become the king of discord and disunion.”
These are NOT my words, but the words written on the front of the book jacket. The information presented is NOT brilliantly reported. Did Mr. Wolff think he was still writing for the Hollywood Reporter? Because this book belongs next to the entertainment gossip rags in the grocery line checkout lane.
OOPS! Did I let the opinionated owl out of the bag already?
There is nothing ‘astoundingly fresh’ here. In fact, it’s astoundingly stale. It is obvious that Mr. Trump aligned himself with the ineptest people, so he could easily use his puffery to keep everyone guessing until his next Twitter storm.
“If Trump cared about something, he usually already had a fixed view based on limited information. Hence, the Trump budget team was also largely forced to return to Trump’s speeches when searching for the general policy themes they could fasten into a budget program.” Page 116
Nothing new there.
The book in my opinion isn’t really about Trump, but his minions, Bannon, Priebus, and Kushner and the rest of Trump’s myriad of advisors. His advisors use the media in which to effectively move President Trump to fit whatever agenda would further remove Obama’s legacy, infuriate the Democrats, and send the media dogs sniffing down another fruitless trail (and yes, these ARE my words).
What I did find surprising
“Although many saw him (Mike Pence) as a vice president who might well assume the presidency someday, he was also perceived as the weakest vice president in decades and, in organizational terms, an empty suit who was useless in the daily effort to help restrain the president and stabilize the West Wing.” Page 124
Almost everyone I have spoken to that did not vote for Donald Trump seems to be utterly afraid should the president be impeached or resign. Could it be actually worse? If how the vice president is supposedly viewed is as an empty suit, I go back to my 18-year-old self and ask, “Which one is more likely to get us into a war?” Unfortunately, we are already at war with each other here at home.
Where there’s smoke there is fire
If the reader was hoping to find a smoking gun, the only thing this book has is smoke… and a lot of it.
If you want to read this book to find out about Donald Trump, his administration and their Russian connections and fury with the intelligence departments at the White House, my recommendation is to support your local library and don’t make the author, Mr. Wolff any richer than he is right now. Whatever tidbits of information he collected from his access to the White House have merely been vomited onto the pages of his book. There isn’t any analysis of the information gathered to give any credibility to the author’s account of his reporting or legitimacy of his findings.
Genre: History, Biographies & Memoirs
On a scale of 1 to 5 Hoots, Fire and Fury, Inside the Trump White House, written by Michael Wolff has earned a 2-Hoot Rating!
The Blogging Owl
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