Top positive review
Trump Revealed Through Another Prism
Reviewed in the United States on April 2, 2019
Poor Rick Reilly. This is an exceptionally entertaining and well written book, with loads of fascinating tidbits about golf, golfing presidents, and everything that surrounds the game at the presidential level. There is, literally, an engaging fact, perceptive observation, joke, amusing story, or wry throwaway line on every page. But, it's unavoidable, given the premise here, that everything circles back to and focuses on Donald J. Trump. And I guess there is no way to avoid that, although I am happy to note that at least it's mostly the introductory chapter that is the biggest downer. After that Reilly focuses on the golf, even if it is Trump's version of golf.
Trump isn't a funny golfer, or a goofy golfer, or a supremely accomplished golfer, or a potentially fun or even interesting golf partner, (unless you're a bit of a masochist). Trump is a liar and an unrelenting cheat in a sport that values, above all else, honesty, courtesy and playing by the rules. Linger on that thought too long, and the stories here can be sad and depressing.
But then - well, gosh it can be funny. As the Borscht belt comics would say - "It's funny, because it's true". Trump is immersed in and obsessed with golf, (playing it, owning the courses, rubbing elbows with celebrity golfers), and all aspects of that obsession are considered and illuminated. Reilly dissects each of Trump's claimed Club Championships, (which is the claim that originally ticked Reilly off). He is merciless in describing Trump's "idiots abroad" approach to Scotland. He recounts innumerable stories about cheating, phony handicaps, and baseless and ludicrous claims by Trump about his skills, his courses, and his prowess. Reilly gives Trump props where appropriate, but always has to circle back to the fact, observed repeatedly, that Trump is constitutionally compelled to exaggerate that which is merely "good" into splendiforous magnificence, and is so convinced that everyone cheats at everything that cheating and winning at any cost is the real normal. Harmless enough, ultimately, on the golf course. But.
So, poor Rick Reilly. He has written a very good, thorough, and sometimes laugh out loud funny book. But, you know, Trump. Read it, and despair.
(Please note that I received a free ecopy of this book without a review requirement, or any influence regarding review content should I choose to post a review. Apart from that I have no connection at all to either the author or the publisher of this book.)