The book "Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House," by Michael Wolff, has been causing such a fury itself that its publication date was moved up to Friday.
Portions of the book, which had been scheduled for release next Tuesday, began appearing online Wednesday. They include a portrayal of "chaos and dysfunction" inside Trump's White House, unflattering descriptions of the president by his advisers, tales of dissent among his staff and criticism of the Trump family by then-aide Stephen K. Bannon.
Trump's legal team sent a letter to the book's publisher, Henry Holt, demanding that it "immediately cease and desist from any further publication, release or dissemination of the book."
Instead of stopping the book's publication, the publisher decided to get it into readers' hands earlier.
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"Due to unprecedented demand, we are moving the on-sale date for all formats of 'Fire and Fury,' by Michael Wolff, to Friday, January 5, at 9 a.m. ET, from the current on-sale date of Tuesday, January 9," Henry Holt said in a statement.
The controversy has indeed whetted readers' appetites for the book. It is currently No. 1 on Amazon.com, via pre-sales, both in print and as a Kindle ebook.
The book includes critiques of the president said to come from close colleagues, including Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin, former chief of staff Reince Priebus, chief economic adviser Gary Cohn and national security adviser H.R. McMaster.
"For Steve Mnuchin and Reince Priebus, the president was an 'idiot.' For Gary Cohn, he was 'dumb as s--t.' For H.R. McMaster he was a 'dope.' The list went on," Wolff wrote.
Additionally, Trump "had a longtime fear of being poisoned," Wolff wrote; "one reason why he liked to eat at McDonald's – nobody knew he was coming and the food was safely premade."
If these statements are not true, Trump could move forward with legal action. But the attention from the president, even while negative, was what Peter Ginna, a New York editor, quipped on Twitter is "what a publisher DREAMS OF."
Wolff has said that he conducted 200 interviews to write "Fire and Fury." "The U.S. is in the midst of the most intense political storm since Watergate, and my aim in reporting and writing this book was to see life inside the White House through the eyes of the people who are closest to the center of this hurricane," Wolff told The Guardian in November.