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MELANIA AND ME by Stephanie Winston Wolkoff


The Rise and Fall of My Friendship With the First Lady

by Stephanie Winston Wolkoff

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2020
ISBN: 978-1-9821-5124-9
Publisher: Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster

Yet another tell-all from a disgruntled Trump administration ex, this time from the East Wing.

“Imagine if your close friend suddenly, unexpectedly, became one of the most powerful, influential women in the whole world,” writes Wolkoff, the founder of a consulting agency and former director of special events for Vogue, in this tedious, opportunistic memoir. A few years later, the author read this headline on the front page of the New York Times: “Trump’s Inaugural Committee Paid $26 Million to First Lady’s Friend.” As Wolkoff writes, “my personal compensation for my work on the inauguration that I retained was $480,000….Many people working on the inauguration made far more than I did.” To be fair, the author is one of countless victims of the Trump propensity for stiffing former employees and then smearing them publicly, and she notes that, after attorney fees, she is “in the hole almost a million dollars.” The book deal should help recoup some of those expenses. Though the author sets the record straight in mind-numbing detail—more than 80 pages cover the day-by-day planning of the inauguration—she offers scant fresh information about Melania or her husband’s administration. Was Melania upset about the Access Hollywood tape? No. Is she close with Ivanka? No. Throughout the book, which is about 100 pages too long, the author documents her relationship with her former friend via the many texts they exchanged, replete with heart emojis and effusive declarations of love—e.g., “I LOVE YOU…XOXO.” For far too long, the author admits, she was stuck in “Mel-La-Lania Land,” but she fails to provide enough interesting material from behind the wall. The best news coming from the book is that at least one 2016 voter has changed her mind about DJT, as he is called here.

The kind of book a therapist might tell you to write to get it out of your system.