or to give the book it’s full title – Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man.
I’m not a fan of Donald Trump. As far as I’m concerned he has no redeeming qualities and should have been in jail many years ago, either for fraud, bribery or sexual assault. I have read a number of books about Trump, most recently I reviewed a couple here.
This book by Mary Trump is different as she is family. A granddaughter of Fred Trump Snr. and a niece of Donald. She refers to her uncle throughout the book as Donald, never as Donald Trump or The President. Fred Trump was a very successful businessman, but a very poor father, wanting his sons to have a ‘killer’ instinct, to win at all costs. Mary’s father, Freddy, wasn’t deemed to be ruthless enough and was constantly made to feel inferior by Fred Trump. Donald saw this as he was growing up and subsequently became a nasty bully, ignoring his mother and teachers to the point where he was shipped off to a Military Academy, which only made him worse.
Donald has always boasted about how he graduated college top of his class, although he sued his college to ensure that they never released his results. Mary goes further by saying that Trump paid someone else to take the entrance exam. Denied by Donald, obviously, but totally believable. After college Donald went to ‘work’ for his old man, although this mainly involved getting paid a lot for doing very little. As Mary exaplins, doing very little but taking the credit is a Trump family trait. When Donald branched out on his own, all of his early success was engineered by his father; the money, the contacts and then ensuring that Donald was surrounded by people who did know what they were doing. Once Donald moved into Casinos, and area Fred knew nothing, Donald started to fail, and fail big time.
There isn’t a great deal in this book which isn’t already known, but to hear it from someone inside the Trump family makes it more shocking, no wonder Donald tried to ban it. This brings me onto the Fred Trump will. Mary, her brother and their mother were completely left out of the will, and had to take the four remaining siblings to court. They didn’t have a great lawyer who ended up agreeing that the estate was only worth $30m. Four years later the estate was sold for $700m, with Donald receiving $170m to help pay some of his huge debts, even though the estate was valued at the time at $1,000m, another huge loss for Donald.
There are so many other stories in the book. Especially shocking is the treatment of Mary’s father, Freddy, who when he became seriously ill wasn’t taken to a hospital until it was too late, and then no one from the family went with him so he dies alone. Mary was at college at the time and wasn’t told how seriously ill he was. Donald went to the cinema to watch a film.
Donald has failed upwards his whole life and with the Presidency it is obvious that he defers to dictators, Putin and Kim Jong-un, while trying to create his own dictatorship in the US, (just look at the troops on the streets of Portland). On a recent interview with Fox News he declined to state if he would observe the results of the 2020 election. It should also be very worrying that he took a cognitive test. Only people with signs of dementia need to take that test. The 2020 election is less than 100 days away, and for the sake of the world Trump must be defeated.
I have to say that this book is probably the best book about Trump that I’ve read, along with the ones by Bob Woodward and the golfing book by Rick Reilly. Well worth reading and another 5 out of 5 on Goodreads.