cover image A Warning

A Warning

Anonymous. Twelve, $29.95 (260p) ISBN 978-1-5387-1846-9

The anonymous White House official whose September 2018 New York Times op-ed revealed a "resistance" inside the Trump administration returns with a brisk, page-turning critique of the president. The author portrays a "broken" White House devoid of "process," with senior staff reduced to "glorified government babysitters." He describes Trump as unable to focus on complex subjects and as being in possession of an "astounding" level of "intellectual laziness." The president, according to Anonymous, is a "pretender to courage" with a warped, self-interested sense of justice; an unexplained affinity for dictators and strongmen over America's allies; and a troubling disregard for the truth when it conflicts with "preposterous" deep state conspiracy theories. The book's biggest surprise, however, is its lack of surprises%E2%80%94there is little here that hasn't been previously reported. The author provides disappointingly few details of Trump's most controversial moments; instead, the book hammers home the broad warning that Trump is "unfit" for office. "I cannot say who will turn the ship," the author concludes, "but four more years of Trump could very well sink it." In the midst of an impeachment inquiry, this resonant, alarming message is undermined by the messenger's unwillingness to be specific. Agent: Matt Latimer and Keith Urbahn, Javelin Literary Agency. (Nov.)