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TrumpNation: The Art of Being the Donald

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Read the book that launched a $5 billion lawsuit. For anyone terrified of what life might be like under President Trump, this biography offers a probing account of the man behind the hype. Available for the first time in a decade, with a new introduction by the author, this entertaining look inside the world of Donald Trump is chock full of rip-roaring anecdotes, jaw-dropp Read the book that launched a $5 billion lawsuit. For anyone terrified of what life might be like under President Trump, this biography offers a probing account of the man behind the hype. Available for the first time in a decade, with a new introduction by the author, this entertaining look inside the world of Donald Trump is chock full of rip-roaring anecdotes, jaw-dropping quotes, and rigorous research into the business deals, political antics, curious relationships, and complex background of the leading Republican presidential candidate.   Granted unprecedented access, Timothy L. O’Brien traveled across the country and up and down the East Coast with Trump on his private jet, wheeled around Palm Beach with him in his Ferrari, and spent hours interviewing him in his home, in his office, and on the golf course. He met with the entrepreneur’s closest friends and most aggressive rivals, while compiling a treasure trove of Trumpisms from the Donald himself:   Trump on the public’s enduring fascination with Trump: “There is something crazy, hot, a phenomenon out there about me, but I’m not sure I can define it and I’m not sure I want to.”   Trump on naysayers: “You can go ahead and speak to guys who have four-hundred-pound wives at home who are jealous of me, but the guys who really know me know I’m a great builder.”   Trump on the art of self-promotion: “You might as well tell people how great you are, because no one else is going to.”   Ultimately, when O’Brien’s research revealed that Trump’s business record and annual spot on the Forbes 400 list of richest Americans might be more fantasy than reality, he—like so many others who have dared to tangle with the former host of The Apprentice—found himself in a courtroom. In a new introduction, O’Brien reflects on the recent wave of TrumpMania and updates readers on what it’s like to depose one of the world’s most litigious businessmen—and win.   This “myth-busting biography” (Kirkus Reviews) is the only argument you need against making America a TrumpNation, providing all the necessary details to “separate Trump the reality from Trump the reality show” (USA Today).  


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Read the book that launched a $5 billion lawsuit. For anyone terrified of what life might be like under President Trump, this biography offers a probing account of the man behind the hype. Available for the first time in a decade, with a new introduction by the author, this entertaining look inside the world of Donald Trump is chock full of rip-roaring anecdotes, jaw-dropp Read the book that launched a $5 billion lawsuit. For anyone terrified of what life might be like under President Trump, this biography offers a probing account of the man behind the hype. Available for the first time in a decade, with a new introduction by the author, this entertaining look inside the world of Donald Trump is chock full of rip-roaring anecdotes, jaw-dropping quotes, and rigorous research into the business deals, political antics, curious relationships, and complex background of the leading Republican presidential candidate.   Granted unprecedented access, Timothy L. O’Brien traveled across the country and up and down the East Coast with Trump on his private jet, wheeled around Palm Beach with him in his Ferrari, and spent hours interviewing him in his home, in his office, and on the golf course. He met with the entrepreneur’s closest friends and most aggressive rivals, while compiling a treasure trove of Trumpisms from the Donald himself:   Trump on the public’s enduring fascination with Trump: “There is something crazy, hot, a phenomenon out there about me, but I’m not sure I can define it and I’m not sure I want to.”   Trump on naysayers: “You can go ahead and speak to guys who have four-hundred-pound wives at home who are jealous of me, but the guys who really know me know I’m a great builder.”   Trump on the art of self-promotion: “You might as well tell people how great you are, because no one else is going to.”   Ultimately, when O’Brien’s research revealed that Trump’s business record and annual spot on the Forbes 400 list of richest Americans might be more fantasy than reality, he—like so many others who have dared to tangle with the former host of The Apprentice—found himself in a courtroom. In a new introduction, O’Brien reflects on the recent wave of TrumpMania and updates readers on what it’s like to depose one of the world’s most litigious businessmen—and win.   This “myth-busting biography” (Kirkus Reviews) is the only argument you need against making America a TrumpNation, providing all the necessary details to “separate Trump the reality from Trump the reality show” (USA Today).  

30 review for TrumpNation: The Art of Being the Donald

  1. 4 out of 5

    Trish

    Tim O'Brien restored my sense of humor. O'Brien was sued by the Donald over the reporting in this book, twice, but if anything, O'Brien makes the Donald look bombastic rather than purposely evil. At first I was disconcerted by the breezy style, but by the middle I understood that the style matched the subject matter. I was laughing by the time O’Brien tells us about the fight headlined daily in the New York papers between developer Trump and Mayor Koch in the 1980s. I got to the point where I wa Tim O'Brien restored my sense of humor. O'Brien was sued by the Donald over the reporting in this book, twice, but if anything, O'Brien makes the Donald look bombastic rather than purposely evil. At first I was disconcerted by the breezy style, but by the middle I understood that the style matched the subject matter. I was laughing by the time O’Brien tells us about the fight headlined daily in the New York papers between developer Trump and Mayor Koch in the 1980s. I got to the point where I was thinking, like Trump’s wives, “That’s just Donald. He does it to everybody.” He is a braggart and a smooth-talking operator. Everyone knows he is lying, but because no one takes him seriously, what he says doesn’t matter. But that’s all over now. Now people must take him seriously, and it is difficult to change early impressions. The only thing we do know is that among the powerful, nearly everyone is waiting for him to trip up and hang himself. No one, except perhaps Giuliani, has any loyalty to this guy. After all, Trump has insulted them, lorded over them, sued them even. He won the election, yes, but if he blows it, they will dump him faster than Brutus stabbed Caesar. Now, to this book. It was initially published in October of 2005, long before politicos around the nation were speaking of Trump in the same breath as Bush, Romney, and Obama. Their worlds did not overlap. A second edition of the book was published June 2016 with a new Introduction (described here in the Washington Post) which should give you some idea of O’Brien’s writing style and attitudes towards the Don. The thing that I began to warm to in O’Brien’s telling is that this could be perceived as funny. Donald is a gad-dang charlatan, for cripes’ sake. Everyone knows that, especially the dour-faced Republicans who opposed him during the campaign. And they are all lawyers. Donald has so much objectionable, actionable, lying behaviors behind--and presumably ahead--of him that they can take him down at any time they decide to put their little minds to the task. It just depends how long they can keep him on their leash. This has nothing to do with “popular opinion.” That pleasantry will go right out the window when the politicos decide enough is enough. Brutus and Caesar. Anyway, O'Brien's telling is a hoot. I first read David Cay Johnston’s The Making of Donald Trump which allowed me to relax into this more casual history. Both books have great stories about Trump in conflict with one powerful billionaire after another. I particularly liked the story about Trump so admiring the Plaza Hotel that he bought it despite its flaws at a price which began to suck his wallet dry."This isn’t just a building, it’s the ultimate work of art," Donald said of his hotel. "I was in love with it…I tore myself up to get the Plaza."It’s nice to know there is some sentiment in the guy, even if it is only for a building and not for the blond bombshells he married to amuse himself and dazzle us. Somewhere along the time O’Brien recalls the testimony from Steve Wynn, Las Vegas developer, discussing Trump(1) do I begin to see that Trump’s election is a fluke, and that he is hanging again by his toenails to this high bar he has managed, by luck and bravado, to scale. But there isn’t much underneath him, and it is just a matter of time before the Washington establishment declares “This emperor has NO clothes!” Endlessly amusing if one can detach the real-world implications of Donald Trump as President of the United States, this book should be required reading for those too distressed to listen to news since the election. It is a reality inoculation to stave off despair. We knew we had a lot of work to do to repair the political system. Now we have no choice. It is not a question of “if” or “when.” The answer will have to be “now.” Be prepared to become involved. (1)Steve Wynn on Donald Trump:"No sane or rational guy would respond to Trump," Wynn responded. "His statements to people like you, whether they concern us or our projects, or our motivations, or his own reality, or his own future, or his own present, you have seen over the years have no relation to truth or fact. And if you need me to remind you that, we’re both in trouble. He’s a fool." This is featured as a Goodreads giveaway for another 24 hours or so. Sign up! You may want something to laugh through over Christmas vacation, before rolling up your sleeves to get to work next year putting some structures in place when he goes down. Think positively.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Shaun

    I thought this was a very honest portrayal of Donald Trump, a man whose real talent is not his building expertise or his business acumen but instead his ability to sell to himself. Like Trump or hate him, it is impossible to deny his celebrity status. And it is this celebrity status that has ensured he remain a household name for decades. After reading this book, I do feel as if I have a greater appreciation for Trump's appeal to so many Americans. 1. Those around him report he is an extremely po I thought this was a very honest portrayal of Donald Trump, a man whose real talent is not his building expertise or his business acumen but instead his ability to sell to himself. Like Trump or hate him, it is impossible to deny his celebrity status. And it is this celebrity status that has ensured he remain a household name for decades. After reading this book, I do feel as if I have a greater appreciation for Trump's appeal to so many Americans. 1. Those around him report he is an extremely positive person, claiming that even when he was worth less than nothing (-900 million according to some), he had this uncanny ability to stay positive. 2. He not only does what he wants, he's unapologetic about it...and if you don't like it you can go "f" yourself. 3. He represents not only having money and excess but also in reveling in it. 4. He is extremely loyal to those who support him and extremely viscous to those who don't. 5. He is a marketing genius who understands that perception is everything, but even more importantly perception can be manipulated (too easily, sometimes). 6. He says what he thinks even if he doesn't always mean what he says. 7. He's charismatic and a great entertainer. 8. He is the master of spin, inflating his successes and minimizing his failures. 9. He dares to be politically incorrect (and unapologetically so). 10. He's not a politician or part of the establishment. Personally, I don't begrudge Trump his success or wealth. I don't care how many women he's slept with. I also don't care how inflated his self-worth is...(he has consistently claimed to be worth billions when most estimate his true worth is closer to millions). Because honestly, I don't think being rich or popular qualifies you to be the leader of the free world. My concerns with Trump are many and were also highlighted in the narrative. 1. His sense of entitlement. This idea that he not only gets a free pass because of his wealth, but that he actually deserves it. 2. He is extremely vindictive in an almost childish way. 3. He has the attention span of a toddler. Something his critics claim has contributed to many of his business failures. 4. His absolute failures in business far outnumber his successes. 5. He believes his own bullshit. It's one thing to try and put spin on something, it's another to actually start to believe your own tall tales. 6. He really knows very little about the issues facing America, just like he knew very little about running a casino, or an airline, or a football team etc, etc, etc. But that didn't stop him. 7. Much of his "success" is the result of smoke and mirrors. While this makes for good entertainment, I'm not sure you can fake your way through running a country...and if you can...God help us. 8. He lacks real convictions. He's more interested in wealth and power than in principles. 9. He doesn't feel as if he should answer to anyone...certainly not the American people. 10. Despite what some believe, Trump has a long history of political ambitions and aspirations. This is just the first time that he's been taken seriously. 11. Money isn't everything, not on a basic individual level or a more global level. Integrity, ethics, an appreciation for the human experience, health, happiness, the ability to live our lives as we see fit. Sure money is a necessity, but it's not the end. I could go on, but that's not the point of this review. I once read that a little bit of narcissism is not only essential for success, but probably healthy. I agree. But Trump seems to have more than a little bit of narcissism. In fact, he possess an extraordinary amount of narcissism that prevents him from being reflective, a trait that any true great leader needs. Bottom line: This was a fair book. Well researched and well sourced. O'Brien showed the many sides of Trump...not all of them necessarily bad. This was the fourth of six books I committed to read prior to the election and the only 5 star so far, partly because I felt it was the most objective and well-rounded.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Jean

    I was interested in reading this book that was first published in 2005 because it was the book that Trump filed the 5 billion dollar libel lawsuit over. In July 2009 the Judge dismissed the case saying Trump had not proven his case. The author interviewed Trump and his family and associates as well as researching documents and archives. O’Brien reveals Trump as a very complex man. At the time of the book Trump was 1.8 billion in debt. At times O’Brien seemed sarcastic in his descriptions of Trum I was interested in reading this book that was first published in 2005 because it was the book that Trump filed the 5 billion dollar libel lawsuit over. In July 2009 the Judge dismissed the case saying Trump had not proven his case. The author interviewed Trump and his family and associates as well as researching documents and archives. O’Brien reveals Trump as a very complex man. At the time of the book Trump was 1.8 billion in debt. At times O’Brien seemed sarcastic in his descriptions of Trump’s actions and business. O’Brien say Trump inflates any numbers he reports on including his net worth to the floor count of his buildings. The author paints a picture of a man making decisions on an emotional basis rather than from sound financial facts. He paid high prices for hotels that would never produce the income to pay off the debt. He lost a lot of money on bad business decisions over the years with his father bailing him out. The picture the book reveals of Trump we can now watch daily on the news. The book is well written but is not exactly a biography. It reads more like a magazine interview. O’Brien reveals the underside of Trump. The book is enlighting and entertaining. I read this as an audiobook downloaded from Audible. Peter Ganim and Timothy O’Brien do a good job narrating the book. The book is short at 3.5 hours long.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Diana Long

    Published in 2005 and re-published in 2015 with an updated introduction. The author is a journalist and spent years following Donald Trump and his exploits and captures the essence of the poster boy for the American Dream in this work. So what is it about Trump that people tend to gravitate toward him? By watching videos, reading one of his books and especially this book, I finally got it. There is only one Donald Trump, he's a one man show and no one could surpass his ability for self promotio Published in 2005 and re-published in 2015 with an updated introduction. The author is a journalist and spent years following Donald Trump and his exploits and captures the essence of the poster boy for the American Dream in this work. So what is it about Trump that people tend to gravitate toward him? By watching videos, reading one of his books and especially this book, I finally got it. There is only one Donald Trump, he's a one man show and no one could surpass his ability for self promotion. He has been the same for decades with his arsenal of lies, cajoling or manipulation, the ultimate self-made super rich real estate tycoon. But is he super-rich? Depends on who is viewing it. He is if he says he is and it just might not be if the truth were told via the tax returns. Unless they pry them out of his cold dead hands they won't come to light. I found it fascinating that the author was sued regarding the release of his book, and Trump Lost. Not because of his character or similar unflattering items but basically for the fact that the Trump name is a “Brand”, how is he going to promote the super rich pay me to use my name if he's not worth mega bucks? After all Donald did supply plenty of fodder for the grist helping the author write the book. So folks buy and read all of his non fiction, fiction books pay him for classes and sorry to tell you it's all “smoke and mirrors”, there is only one and that's Donald and he is “The Greatest American Con Man”. Will he be the greatest President? History will one day examine his Presidency and all the controversy surrounding it. After he does retire, I don't doubt he will write another book “The Art of the Con: How I Duped Millions of American's to Vote For Me” and it will most likely be a best seller. I do recommend this book for everyone, especially if you have any future plans on doing business with the Trump.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Bryan Craig

    This is great background on Donald Trump's rise in the business world. It stops at 2005, but the author peels back the various masks Trump creates in marketing himself, and the author successfully unveils some consistent traits and methods we see as president. It's more warts, however, after reading this book, today's chaos makes a more sense. This is great background on Donald Trump's rise in the business world. It stops at 2005, but the author peels back the various masks Trump creates in marketing himself, and the author successfully unveils some consistent traits and methods we see as president. It's more warts, however, after reading this book, today's chaos makes a more sense.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Owlseyes

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphi... https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphi...

  7. 5 out of 5

    Robert

    This was an interesting look The Donald before he got serious about politics. In short he's been much about selling an image rather than an a tangible item. To paraphrase someone else he's the poor man's image of a rich man. A weak man's image of a tough guy. The late iconic movie star John Wayne did this as he became a character all his own in an almost self parody. Instead of Wayne playing a part, the part was Wayne. It was John Wayne the sailor. It was John Wayne the Marine and of course John This was an interesting look The Donald before he got serious about politics. In short he's been much about selling an image rather than an a tangible item. To paraphrase someone else he's the poor man's image of a rich man. A weak man's image of a tough guy. The late iconic movie star John Wayne did this as he became a character all his own in an almost self parody. Instead of Wayne playing a part, the part was Wayne. It was John Wayne the sailor. It was John Wayne the Marine and of course John Wayne the cowboy. In turn it was Donald the real estate mogul. It was Donald the airline owner. It was Donald owning a football team. It was Donald owning(and bankrupting) casino's. It was Donald the deal-maker and so on. The book ends just as he is riding the initial success of "The Apprentice" which is said to reinvent and repair Donald's image after the 90's beat him up a bit. This is before his start with birther-ism and one could say his spiraling towards his more darker side in politics. Up to this he had been relatively harmless minor celebrity riding a wave of popularity due to his show. His legacy may have gone relatively untarnished had his celebrity peaked here but obviously it didn't. It's not a bad book if you're looking for a relatively unbiased look at Donald before he became politically decisive and controversial. He was no angel up to this point but he wasn't the leader of the free world either. It doesn't have the feel of an overly serious look at Donald himself or any of his shadier business practices or his outdated personal beliefs that would later come to life. The book sort of treats him as a modern day(as of 2005) P.T. Barnum which isn't meant as a dig but it was pretty much where Donald was at that point in history as he was sort of taken as a joke. It seems the joke was on us.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Mary

    Trump as he is Excellent book. It's not mean, just an honest look at Donald Trump. Not a biography. Sort of a running interview, interspersed with factual context. That's important because Trump isn't big on facts. Enjoyed it and got a better idea of the man. He's not a cartoon character, just someone enjoying the limelight and perks of wealth, whether or not he has them. In this election year, he is great for forcing issues into the forefront, not something other candidates are really good at. L Trump as he is Excellent book. It's not mean, just an honest look at Donald Trump. Not a biography. Sort of a running interview, interspersed with factual context. That's important because Trump isn't big on facts. Enjoyed it and got a better idea of the man. He's not a cartoon character, just someone enjoying the limelight and perks of wealth, whether or not he has them. In this election year, he is great for forcing issues into the forefront, not something other candidates are really good at. Likewise, he's not meant for high office, maybe any office. He's for show, and doing a good job that way. Just for show.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Dana

    The best part is when the author compares a Trump to PT Barnum ( their biographies really are similar!) I agree with other reviewers that this is more of a long interview than a biography, but there some great details in it. 2.5/5 stars

  10. 5 out of 5

    Theresa Gilman

    Trumpy Well, what can one say? That I'm sad to find that there appears to be no discernible growth in the man over 40+ years? The book is fine. I'm just depressed that this boob may soon be running our country as badly as he's run his businesses. Trumpy Well, what can one say? That I'm sad to find that there appears to be no discernible growth in the man over 40+ years? The book is fine. I'm just depressed that this boob may soon be running our country as badly as he's run his businesses.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Scott Hunter

    good account of who Trump is.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Everydayreader1

    Donald Trump. Who is he, and what is he all about? Timothy L. O'Brien attempts, in so far as is possible, tries to answer those questions for the reader. The footnotes and sources referenced attest to the author's meticulous research. And Mr. Trump gave him access and approval for the writing of this book. I decided to read this book because I wanted to have a better understanding of Mr. Trump as a person and as a presidential candidate. When I read that Mr. Trump sued Mr. O'Brien for $5 billion, Donald Trump. Who is he, and what is he all about? Timothy L. O'Brien attempts, in so far as is possible, tries to answer those questions for the reader. The footnotes and sources referenced attest to the author's meticulous research. And Mr. Trump gave him access and approval for the writing of this book. I decided to read this book because I wanted to have a better understanding of Mr. Trump as a person and as a presidential candidate. When I read that Mr. Trump sued Mr. O'Brien for $5 billion, and the courts rejected Mr. Trump's claim of libel, I thought this book might offer me what I was seeking. And it did. When I finished reading, I could once again take a deep breath and say, whew! Mr. Trump is an intense personality. His life is like a speeding roller coaster. I believe the author did an excellent job of capturing that essence.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Spencer Jakab

    Not only did I laugh out loud several times while reading this book but I was duly impressed with the author's snarky insights in Trump's character. This was written a decade before be began his presidential run that spawned thousands of articles about the man yet it is consistent with them in terms of his character. O'Brien had unprecedented access to Trump and was fairly kind to him (I think) but was sued for $5 billion. The Trumpster's gripe: Understating his net worth. The suit was thrown ou Not only did I laugh out loud several times while reading this book but I was duly impressed with the author's snarky insights in Trump's character. This was written a decade before be began his presidential run that spawned thousands of articles about the man yet it is consistent with them in terms of his character. O'Brien had unprecedented access to Trump and was fairly kind to him (I think) but was sued for $5 billion. The Trumpster's gripe: Understating his net worth. The suit was thrown out. Great, entertaining read - highly recommended.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Tracy Dougherty

    The write obviously doesn't like DJT. He spends a lot of time chronicling the Apprentice show but doesn't give any behind the scenes info. He writes a lot about who DJT knows or has been associated with but there are no stories. It's redundant and light on substance. I could have googled the majority of this info and pieced the same story together. The write obviously doesn't like DJT. He spends a lot of time chronicling the Apprentice show but doesn't give any behind the scenes info. He writes a lot about who DJT knows or has been associated with but there are no stories. It's redundant and light on substance. I could have googled the majority of this info and pieced the same story together.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Blondish And Bookish

    I was interested in reading some Trump biographies that were written prior to his run for presidency. I was expecting to learn about his rise and fall (rises and falls??). I was NOT expecting this book to be so entertaining!! Author Timothy O’Brien has written a very funny, tongue-in-cheek, poking-fun-at-The-Donald book. My favorite parts are the tips at the end of each chapter, tips for being like Trump. The one that made me laugh out loud was something like this: Tip #1: Bring your wife and you I was interested in reading some Trump biographies that were written prior to his run for presidency. I was expecting to learn about his rise and fall (rises and falls??). I was NOT expecting this book to be so entertaining!! Author Timothy O’Brien has written a very funny, tongue-in-cheek, poking-fun-at-The-Donald book. My favorite parts are the tips at the end of each chapter, tips for being like Trump. The one that made me laugh out loud was something like this: Tip #1: Bring your wife and your mistress to the same boxing match, on the same helicopter. Hire an escort to be your mistress’ date. Assume no one will catch on. Tip #2: Take your wife and your mistress skiing in Aspen, at the same time. Assume they will not spot each other. Tip #3: When they see each other and start fighting, flee the scene. Tip #4: Forget that your wife was a competitive skier, and assume she’ll never catch up to you. But, the book is not a joke, it’s actually a very well done biography. It starts with his father, Fred Trump, (and that guy legit WAS a self-made millionaire!). Fred’s father passed away and Fred started a construction company as a teenager, with his mother having to drive him around and also sign everything because he wasn’t old enough to do so himself! And some of the stuff that Donald Trump did WAS impressive. Unfortunately it was mostly impressive because it seemed impossible for him to get away with it. No matter what happened, no matter how badly things were going, Trump was able to claim that things were great, and rosy, and he was making billions of dollars! And people would buy into it—buy stock in a company that the experts claimed was worthless, partner with Trump in a no-value deal, etc, over and over again. And Trump would triumph (although everybody else would lose out, but hey, that’s THEIR problem!). There were details on many of Trumps feuds, and interviews with his employees (mostly happy and seemed to love their jobs) and his wives, friends, and enemies. And the inevitable comparison with PT Barnum was presented, which was also a pretty funny section. I enjoyed this book tremendously, and would recommend it to anyone who has a sense of humor or who wants to know background on Donald Trump!

  16. 4 out of 5

    Nathan Garcia

    "The point is that if you are a little outrageous, or if you do things that are bold or controversial, the press is going to write about you.… That’s why a little hyperbole never hurts. I play to people’s fantasies.… People want to believe that something is the biggest and the greatest and the most spectacular. I call it truthful hyperbole. It’s an innocent form of exaggeration—and a very effective form of promotion." TrumpNation: The Art of Being the Donald by Timothy L. O'Brien covers the life "The point is that if you are a little outrageous, or if you do things that are bold or controversial, the press is going to write about you.… That’s why a little hyperbole never hurts. I play to people’s fantasies.… People want to believe that something is the biggest and the greatest and the most spectacular. I call it truthful hyperbole. It’s an innocent form of exaggeration—and a very effective form of promotion." TrumpNation: The Art of Being the Donald by Timothy L. O'Brien covers the life of Donald Trump from the late 70s to the early 2000s. He covers topics such as Trump's real estate, casino, and television endeavors. This book doesn't view Trump from a political lens since he hasn't (earnestly) run for president yet. Each chapter focuses on a period in Trump's life and ends with a facetious quiz. The author's tone is sarcastic and takes some getting used to, but when you do the humor begins to shine through. I came into this book with a dislike for Trump, but an open mind. I left realizing he is just a narcissist that's been given too much attention over the years. There are a lot interesting moments throughout the book that keep you hooked, such as Mike Tyson confronting Trump in his penthouse as to whether or not he's sleeping with Tyson's wife. I enjoyed this book and recommend it to anyone looking to understand what makes Trump such a character.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Rajiv Bais

    This was better than David Cay Johnston’s book. O’Brien’s chats with Trump show you why Trump is full of shit for having sued him. You let an author into your life and say you enjoy his company. Yet, you sue him when he was able to use your words and others’ stories and truths about your actual image against you? What this book also reveals is how Trump clearly isn’t a billionaire and never was one. What kind of billionaire borrows money from banks to build casinos, hotels, and infrastructures in N This was better than David Cay Johnston’s book. O’Brien’s chats with Trump show you why Trump is full of shit for having sued him. You let an author into your life and say you enjoy his company. Yet, you sue him when he was able to use your words and others’ stories and truths about your actual image against you? What this book also reveals is how Trump clearly isn’t a billionaire and never was one. What kind of billionaire borrows money from banks to build casinos, hotels, and infrastructures in New York and Atlantic City and, subsequently, has to borrow money from his dad and siblings? Plus, he was able to start his own Trump Hotel IPO and get shareholders and later sell the Taj Mahal onto the laps of the shareholders of the Trump Hotel IPO? Trump (aka “President Dump”) was enabled by everyone and our government and media are largely responsible for his unnecessary rise to fame. Without laws and financial systems that benefited him and the media’s brat-like need for comeback stories and secret wishes to get access to a rich, party snob, he wouldn’t be what he truly is, a man who became famous over nothing!!! Jeez. I wish I could benefit the same way!

  18. 5 out of 5

    Rick Reitzug

    This book was published in 2005, so it pre-dates Trump's presidency and 2016 presidential campaign. The book provides a fairly even-handed treatment of Trump (i.e., even-handed in that it doesn't paint him completely in a negative light--as it well could, given the ample "ammunition" the author cites). Interestingly, there are many parallels between Trump's unsuccessful, but positively-spun (by him and much of the press), career as a businessman and his presidency. These include his uncanny abil This book was published in 2005, so it pre-dates Trump's presidency and 2016 presidential campaign. The book provides a fairly even-handed treatment of Trump (i.e., even-handed in that it doesn't paint him completely in a negative light--as it well could, given the ample "ammunition" the author cites). Interestingly, there are many parallels between Trump's unsuccessful, but positively-spun (by him and much of the press), career as a businessman and his presidency. These include his uncanny ability, then and now, to deflect from a current significant failure by changing the subject to something sensational but ultimately less important than the failing (e.g., his current attack on Baltimore which detracts from the Mueller testimony, impeachment talk, etc.). The book is well-worth reading even though the end-of-chapter "quizzes" which are intended to be humorous, aren't, and don't seem to serve any valuable purpose.

  19. 5 out of 5

    James

    Those who don't like Donald Trump will read this and it will confirm what they already know about how "The Donald" has skirted bankruptcies, spun bad press, and boasted about false claims to the point where they almost become reality. Those who do like Donald Trump will likely not read this, though they should. Filled with many quotes directly from Trump himself, this book shows just how much of a blowhard he really is. It shows how he borrowed money to build his dream buildings, lost money in sal Those who don't like Donald Trump will read this and it will confirm what they already know about how "The Donald" has skirted bankruptcies, spun bad press, and boasted about false claims to the point where they almost become reality. Those who do like Donald Trump will likely not read this, though they should. Filled with many quotes directly from Trump himself, this book shows just how much of a blowhard he really is. It shows how he borrowed money to build his dream buildings, lost money in sales of some of these buildings, had to borrow more (either from the banks, or from his father, brothers, and sisters) to cover these costs and still managed to convince people he was a real estate development genius. The fact that he is now the President of the United States still blows my mind! I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Dale

    I wish every voter in America, including myself, had read this book in 2015, before the Republican primaries. O'Brien lays bare all Trump's devious shenigans, his actual lack of wealth, his deceit to banks and other lenders, his total disregard for everyone but himself. He even pulled fast ones on his siblings and his father bailed him out on his casino investment at one point! Yet Trump kept the shell game going, and continues to do so to this day. Trump is truly the worst flim-flam man, con art I wish every voter in America, including myself, had read this book in 2015, before the Republican primaries. O'Brien lays bare all Trump's devious shenigans, his actual lack of wealth, his deceit to banks and other lenders, his total disregard for everyone but himself. He even pulled fast ones on his siblings and his father bailed him out on his casino investment at one point! Yet Trump kept the shell game going, and continues to do so to this day. Trump is truly the worst flim-flam man, con artist and snake oil salesman of all time. But worst of all, he never seems to tell the truth about anything, except how wonderful he thinks he is, and because of his own PR, the voters believed him in 2016 and many still believe him now.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Drew

    A quick and easy read which gives a glimpse at the man who would become the 45th POTUS. The book feels very "surface level," but that treatment ultimately seems appropriate given the apparent lack of depth to Donald Trump's guiding philosophies. The revised introduction which includes references to the 2016 presidential campaign is a welcomed addition. It sets the tone for the rest of the book, and keeps the story from feeling trivial or dated. As it stands, Timothy O'Brien's TrumpNation offers s A quick and easy read which gives a glimpse at the man who would become the 45th POTUS. The book feels very "surface level," but that treatment ultimately seems appropriate given the apparent lack of depth to Donald Trump's guiding philosophies. The revised introduction which includes references to the 2016 presidential campaign is a welcomed addition. It sets the tone for the rest of the book, and keeps the story from feeling trivial or dated. As it stands, Timothy O'Brien's TrumpNation offers some unique insight into Trump, and serves as a nice reprieve from the daily onslaught of political scandal raining down on us in the Summer of 2017.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Kevin Larsen

    An interesting read. Written about 2005, there is a 2016 edition with a new introduction. The book is written as a journalist being a friend of Trump, but, of course, not taking him seriously or taking him at his word. A note about how honest the book is is that the author got sued by Trump for alleged wrong estimates of Trump's wealth. Fortunately for us, the publisher fought it in court and the book is uncensored and not redacted. Most importantly in the book is a chapter on Donald Trump's Pub An interesting read. Written about 2005, there is a 2016 edition with a new introduction. The book is written as a journalist being a friend of Trump, but, of course, not taking him seriously or taking him at his word. A note about how honest the book is is that the author got sued by Trump for alleged wrong estimates of Trump's wealth. Fortunately for us, the publisher fought it in court and the book is uncensored and not redacted. Most importantly in the book is a chapter on Donald Trump's Public Relations ability and strategy. Just that chapter says a lot and explains Trump's mysterious behavior in the press. A very good read in trying to understand the Trumpster.

  23. 4 out of 5

    David

    Great and funny bio of "The Donald" up to ~2005. But now that he's been president of the US for about 1 1/2 years...it's not that funny anymore. But the book does show that the Trump we have now in the oval office is the same as he's always been. There's a brief section which mentions P.T. Barnum, the showman, charlatan, and self-promoter. Trump was built from the exact same mold. O'Brien points out that Barnum didn't actually say "there's a sucker born every minute", but he did say "the people l Great and funny bio of "The Donald" up to ~2005. But now that he's been president of the US for about 1 1/2 years...it's not that funny anymore. But the book does show that the Trump we have now in the oval office is the same as he's always been. There's a brief section which mentions P.T. Barnum, the showman, charlatan, and self-promoter. Trump was built from the exact same mold. O'Brien points out that Barnum didn't actually say "there's a sucker born every minute", but he did say "the people like to be humbugged". Indeed, 2016 proved that a great many voters in America don't mind being humbugged at all. Now we are all getting scammed and humbugged.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Paolo Aguas

    The book was just okay, I mean it did not really dive into how to become Donald Trump, it felt more of snippets about him. I honestly cannot see why Trump would want to sue the author about this book (I mean he does say a lot of nasty “true” things about Donald but I mean just let it go). At every end of a chapter in this book there are questions that you answer and you need to answer in the most Trumpiest way I didn’t really find it funny I mean I bought it was okay but nothing extremely funny. The book was just okay, I mean it did not really dive into how to become Donald Trump, it felt more of snippets about him. I honestly cannot see why Trump would want to sue the author about this book (I mean he does say a lot of nasty “true” things about Donald but I mean just let it go). At every end of a chapter in this book there are questions that you answer and you need to answer in the most Trumpiest way I didn’t really find it funny I mean I bought it was okay but nothing extremely funny. Overall I feel the David Caye book was much better than this so take his review for its worth.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Patrick Porras

    Growing up, I didn't really know anything about DJT other than he was rich and he killed it in his cameo in Little Rascals. O'Brien helped me understand the 2016 Presidential Election cycle by showing me who our POTUS has always been. He is a compelling showman. He has been a tabloid favorite since the 80s. His sentences can often simply be fact-less braggadocio, but it has never stopped news outlets and entertainment heads from eating it up, only adding fuel to the fire. An excellent, lucid read Growing up, I didn't really know anything about DJT other than he was rich and he killed it in his cameo in Little Rascals. O'Brien helped me understand the 2016 Presidential Election cycle by showing me who our POTUS has always been. He is a compelling showman. He has been a tabloid favorite since the 80s. His sentences can often simply be fact-less braggadocio, but it has never stopped news outlets and entertainment heads from eating it up, only adding fuel to the fire. An excellent, lucid read that shed light on one of the seminal figures of my adult life.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Gary

    TrumpNation is a shorter version (or the Coles Notes version) of Trump Revealed: An American Journey of Ambition, Ego, Money, and Power. TrumpNation gives you a quick overview of how Trump business started by leverage his father's fortune but with his big bold ideas give him a quick start but how he crashes hard with a string of bankruptcies and narrowly escapes personal ruin. Then finds the simpler world of licensing his name which plays to his strength of self-promotion with dramatically less TrumpNation is a shorter version (or the Coles Notes version) of Trump Revealed: An American Journey of Ambition, Ego, Money, and Power. TrumpNation gives you a quick overview of how Trump business started by leverage his father's fortune but with his big bold ideas give him a quick start but how he crashes hard with a string of bankruptcies and narrowly escapes personal ruin. Then finds the simpler world of licensing his name which plays to his strength of self-promotion with dramatically less risk and complexity.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Katherine Phillips

    I paid a whole dollar for this book at Dollar Tree. In the words of Trump, “What have you got to lose?” The book intrigued me because Trump sued the author over publishing it. (Trump lost.) However, I found it a fair assessment of Trump and hardly a smear job. It was published in 2005, so the whole campaign and election were not included. I love the style that Timothy O’Brien adopted. It was casual and matter-of-fact with many humorous antidotes. I’m mailing tomorrow to my cousin who is a huge T I paid a whole dollar for this book at Dollar Tree. In the words of Trump, “What have you got to lose?” The book intrigued me because Trump sued the author over publishing it. (Trump lost.) However, I found it a fair assessment of Trump and hardly a smear job. It was published in 2005, so the whole campaign and election were not included. I love the style that Timothy O’Brien adopted. It was casual and matter-of-fact with many humorous antidotes. I’m mailing tomorrow to my cousin who is a huge Trump fan. (We argue continuously.) He’ll like it, too.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Bernie Charbonneau

    This was an experiment, insight for myself. I read this book in parallel with Fiona Hills book on Putin. I chose this volume on Trump amongst other choices for the simple reason this was the book that he sued the author for false information that he supplied! Never the less, in reading this book you are left with the exact reason of why and how Trump conducts himself. I figured if Trump org. is suing this work, there must be something in it. By the way, to compare the political climb to the top This was an experiment, insight for myself. I read this book in parallel with Fiona Hills book on Putin. I chose this volume on Trump amongst other choices for the simple reason this was the book that he sued the author for false information that he supplied! Never the less, in reading this book you are left with the exact reason of why and how Trump conducts himself. I figured if Trump org. is suing this work, there must be something in it. By the way, to compare the political climb to the top is really insulting to Putin. As the man said, "I have a biga brain!"

  29. 4 out of 5

    Connie

    A thorough view of the development of business holdings of Donald Trump including price paid for each and every property and what it was later bought for if sold ( a rarity) personalities of those he bought from and most importantly who he borrowed from. The author was successful in portraying a man who always came out on top no matter how large the financial failure. When told about the collapse of his casinos, he reported it to represent only one percent of his holdings (not really true.) Beca A thorough view of the development of business holdings of Donald Trump including price paid for each and every property and what it was later bought for if sold ( a rarity) personalities of those he bought from and most importantly who he borrowed from. The author was successful in portraying a man who always came out on top no matter how large the financial failure. When told about the collapse of his casinos, he reported it to represent only one percent of his holdings (not really true.) Because he did not put any "skin" in the game, (never personally guaranteed any of his loans), he did not lose when he missed his debt payments or when bankruptcy talks came up. At one time 36 banks who had loaned him moneys simultaneously got together to hold him in. Mr. Trump maintained he was too big to fail and they would be hurt by his declaring bankruptcy thus he was put on a budget and advanced even more exhausted in a year due to his personal extravagance in leading the life of a celebrity. He was initially refused an advance of his expected inheritance from his siblings to handle his debt payments because they did not consider him a good credit risk! Casinos never made a profit in all the years of operation save for one but yet he could pull "spending money" from them and thus a success in his eyes. The book confirms the view that Mr. Trump was not a man with the expected business skills. He had no interest in details of managing and little knowledge of day to day activities of his properties thus the tragedy when he lost his 2 managers in one of his faulty helicopters on the way home from being at one of his properties. He was obsessed with Forbes 400 list of the wealthiest in the nation. "The more creditable his claim to vast wealth income, the easier it was for him to get on the Forbes 400-which became the standard that other media, and apparently some of the country's biggest banks, used when judging Donald's riches. " The irony was that all of Trump's holdings were in private companies that did not report earnings so no way to document his actual worth other than his fluctuating self-reports. Likewise the Q score was very important to The Donald. This is a yardstick of an entertainer's appeal and familiarity founded in 1964 by a small Long Island company called Marketing Evaluations about the same time as the Celebrity Register came on the scene. The conclusion was that Donald Trump was well known (an essential to meet the celebrity definition and thus the need for someone to view all media everyday to determine how many times his name was being mentioned by whom) and "Four times as many don't like him as do." (This was a long time before his presidency and at the peak of his popularity!) A revealing tale about how the mind of Trump works and his true values. It should have been a required read for all voters to be BEFORE the 2016 election. Still a necessary enlightenment for all Americans.

  30. 4 out of 5

    George L. Reading

    Good Read This book is well written and has great readability. So very interesting insights into the huckster that is Donald Trump.The author gives Trump credit where credit is due and tells it like it is elucidating Trumps many flows and shortcomings..He does, infact, expose Trump for the truly flowed individual that he truly is.

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