THE METHOD TO THE MADNESS by Allen Salkin

THE METHOD TO THE MADNESS

Donald Trump's Ascent as Told by Those Who Were Hired, Fired, Inspired--and Inaugurated
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KIRKUS REVIEW

Two journalists team up, conduct more than 100 interviews with key figures in (and out of) Camp Trump, and conclude his decision to run for president was far from impulsive.

In Hamlet, Polonius said of the prince’s psychological state, “though this be madness, yet there is method in’t.” Salkin (From Scratch: Inside the Food Network, 2013, etc.) and Short, both of whom have written for the New York Post, set out to prove that the same is true of President Donald Trump. The text comprises snippets of interviews with a variety of sources, from Al Sharpton and Gloria Allred to Anthony Scaramucci and Steve Bannon. (The entire list of contributors, which includes journalists, political figures, and advisers, consumes eight pages.) The authors also chime in continually throughout the 32 chapters. They endeavor to show a different Trump than the one many imagine. Here is a man who takes notes during meetings (!), is a sharp questioner, often displays a long attention span, was willing to alter his positions to appeal to his base, and flirted with running for political office any number of times (including governor of New York) but who always changed his mind. The authors elicit praise from those who are/were close to him, such as Bannon and Tucker Carlson. Not every interview subject, of course, has fond memories, and readers with Trump fatigue should stay away. Some contributors comment about his arrogance (taking credit for “Make America Great Again”—a slogan Ronald Reagan had used), fondness for attractive women, and thin skin. He was, for example, friendly with the Clintons until candidate Hillary seemed to blame his positions for the 2015 South Carolina church shooting. So the escalator ride down to his announcement was thoroughly planned, even inevitable. Other contributors include Katie Couric, David Cay Johnston, Glenn Beck, Ralph Nader, and Roger Stone.

A more positive view of Donald Trump than most Americans have—though the text ends with the election.

Pub Date: July 9th, 2019
ISBN: 978-1-250-20280-2
Page count: 352pp
Publisher: All Points/St. Martin's
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1st, 2019




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