Fire & Fury – Inside the Trump White House | Michael Wolff | Publisher – Henry Holt
Review by GARTH JONES
Journalist Michael Wolff’s Fire & Fury – Inside the Trump White House, was published last week in a storm of anticipation and controversy.
Wolff offers a chilling insight into the Trump administration’s tumultuous first year. Predominantly an entertainment writer, Wolff gained access to the chaotic Trump White House from its inception by merely turning up on a daily basis.
Inevitably disavowed by a furious Trump White House, Fire & Fury is a breathless tabloid exercise. Nonetheless, Wolff’s colourfully observed account is corroborated by the countless volumes of reputable reporting generated since the outlandish real estate mogul and reality television star announced his candidacy.
Leaning heavily on access to Trump Svengali Steve Bannon, Fire & Fury confirms the worst suspicions many hold about the 45th president’s temperament, lack of agenda and complete disinterest in the fundamentals of government.
Bannon, the strategist behind Trump’s ‘Muslim ban’ and an alt-right figurehead in his own right, is given to flights of Shakespearean melodrama and palace intrigue. The former presidential aide and Breitbart news chairman, whose candour has led to disgrace – for now – in even the most right-wing circles, gleefully lays bare the unhinged volatility of the Trump White House.
Bannon puckishly details the ongoing internecine War of Roses between Trump’s family and the Washington insiders tasked with attempting to bring the erratic, Twitter-distracted president to heel. Indeed, there have been revelations this week regarding the conspicuously threadbare presidential attention span, giving further credence to Wolff’s account.
Fire & Fury – Inside the Trump White House reads like a trashy airport novel, very literally trumping Aaron Sorkin (The West Wing) and Beau Willimon (House of Cards) in terms of dysfunctional, real world political intrigue.
As the second year of Trump’s presidency begins, and we grapple pervading sense of global anxiety, Fire & Fury leaves us with a particularly unsettling coda:
“The Trump presidency – however long it lasted – had created the opening that would provide the true outsiders their opportunity. Trump was just the beginning.”