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Confidence man : the making of Donald Trump and the breaking of America
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Library Journal Review
Having covered Donald Trump for many years and won a Pulitzer Prize for reporting on investigations into his and his advisers' connections to Russia, New York Times reporter Haberman here assesses his rise as a calculating businessman/politician, the world that made him possible, and his impact on the U.S. body politic.
Publishers Weekly Review
Like a tsunami traveling hundreds of miles before it crashes onshore, the shock of Donald Trump's election and polarizing presidency was less sudden than it first appeared, according to this sprawling account from Pulitzer winner Haberman. Drawing on decades spent covering Trump, Haberman is especially insightful on how his combative instincts and transactional worldview were forged in the cauldron of New York City's racialized politics and cutthroat real estate market. She documents tussles and quid pro quos with city officials over the Commodore Hotel and the West Side rail yards, and cites a source's claim that Rudy Giuliani, then serving as U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, dropped an investigation into money laundering at Trump Tower because he wanted Trump's support in the 1989 mayoral election. (After he lost, Giuliani made unsubstantiated allegations of electoral fraud: "They stole votes in the Black parts of Brooklyn, and in Washington Heights"). Haberman also shares findings from a 1988 poll commissioned by Roger Stone to sell Trump on "a future in national politics"; recounts White House rivalries ("Did you see I cut Bannon's balls off?" Jared Kushner asked one visitor); and reveals that administration health officials believed Trump would have died from Covid-19 if he hadn't received monoclonal antibodies. Deeply reported and immersively told, this is an essential contribution to the overloaded bookshelf on Trump. (Oct.)
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