The Room Where It Happened

The Room Where It Happened

A White House Memoir

Book - 2020 | First Simon & Schuster hardcover edition.
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As President Trump's National Security Advisor, John Bolton spent many of his 453 days in the room where it happened, and the facts speak for themselves. The result is a White House memoir that is the most comprehensive and substantial account of the Trump Administration, and one of the few to date by a top-level official. With almost daily access to the President, John Bolton has produced a precise rendering of his days in and around the Oval Office. What Bolton saw astonished him: a President for whom getting reelected was the only thing that mattered, even if it meant endangering or weakening the nation. He discovered a President who thought foreign policy is like closing a real estate deal--about personal relationships, made-for-TV showmanship, and advancing his own interests. As a result, the US lost an opportunity to confront its deepening threats, and in cases like China, Russia, Iran, and North Korea ended up in a more vulnerable place.
Publisher: New York, NY :, Simon & Schuster,, 2020.
Edition: First Simon & Schuster hardcover edition.
ISBN: 9781982148034
Characteristics: 577 pages ; 24 cm
Summary: As President Trump's National Security Advisor, John Bolton spent many of his 453 days in the room where it happened, and the facts speak for themselves. The result is a White House memoir that is the most comprehensive and substantial account of the Trump Administration, and one of the few to date by a top-level official. With almost daily access to the President, John Bolton has produced a precise rendering of his days in and around the Oval Office. What Bolton saw astonished him: a President for whom getting reelected was the only thing that mattered, even if it meant endangering or weakening the nation. He discovered a President who thought foreign policy is like closing a real estate deal--about personal relationships, made-for-TV showmanship, and advancing his own interests. As a result, the US lost an opportunity to confront its deepening threats, and in cases like China, Russia, Iran, and North Korea ended up in a more vulnerable place.

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w
wamonica
Sep 19, 2020

Publishers Weekly couldn't have said it better. A very boring book full of self praise and criticisms of just about everybody else.

j
john99999
Sep 16, 2020

John Bolton, who is a hard core conservative republican, who was Donald Trump's National Security Adviser. Who has quite the ego also. Described in detail, the scary events involving Donald Trump's decision making, as with the other books out on Trump, including Bob Woodward's book "Rage", in Trump's own words.

c
Chyfetz
Sep 15, 2020

I too gave up after 100 pages and then just scanned it.

Bolton forgets who was actually elected President.

He must have a HUGE ego - he is telling how he told the President what not to do throughout the book. Give your advice and then shut up. It is hard to read.

Anyone who could take such detailed notes of every last second of conversations is either too busy taking notes to actually do their job or just making it up after the fact.

m
mike100274
Sep 14, 2020

You only need to read the first chapter of this book. Every chapter has the same pattern - 1) Trump is disorganized, 2) I gave him the right advice and he didn't heed it, 3) everything Obama did is wrong. After reading about 200 pages in this pattern just chipped away at the credibility of the author. There are better books out there on the same subject that are more objective.

k
KAREN S HARRIS
Sep 11, 2020

Totally agree on BORING. Not worth the half hr of my time before giving up entirely.

r
raguentnerjr
Sep 01, 2020

Couldn't finish chapter 1. It's a boring pile of crap!

a
Asgard1
Aug 13, 2020

Like everyone else I slogged through this book determined to finish it. It was the most difficult book I’ve ever read in my long life. And I’ve read everything from The Wind in the Willows to Decline of the Roman Empire. All the way through John Bolton paints himself as the only sane voice in the House of Chaos. In other words it’s a testament to himself.

j
Jane5050
Aug 06, 2020

Like other readers, I too tried to get through this book. I just couldn't. The first sign that it wasn't an honest retelling of what happened came in the first few chapters where Bolton said the president was vindicated. Say what? From there on I knew it was going to be a lopsided self-serving summation of his fall from grace. Here is clarification on the topic of 'vindication' from lawfareblog.com:

"The cries of vindication do not survive even the most cursory examination of the document itself. . . ."No, Mueller did not find a criminal conspiracy between the Trump campaign and Russia, and no, he did not conclude that President Trump had obstructed justice. But Mueller emphatically did not find that there had been “no collusion” either. Indeed, he described in page after damning page a dramatic pattern of Russian outreach to figures close to the president, including to Trump’s campaign and his business; Mueller described receptivity to this outreach on the part of those figures; he described a positive eagerness on the part of the Trump campaign to benefit from illegal Russian activity and that of its cutouts; he described serial lies about it all. And he described as well a pattern of behavior on the part of the president in his interactions with law enforcement that is simply incompatible with the president’s duty to “take care” that the laws are “faithfully executed”—a pattern Mueller explicitly declined to conclude did not obstruct justice."
https://www.lawfareblog.com/what-mueller-found-russia-and-obstruction-first-analysis

t
Traynham
Jul 31, 2020

Dreadful book! just awful. Turned it back in w/o reading much. If he had not made such a flap about not testifying, nobody would be interested for good reason.

c
cknightkc
Jul 26, 2020

The author may have been in THE ROOM WHERE IT HAPPENED, but there’s very little new in this book that’s not already been written about the Trump administration. John Bolton should’ve testified and saved Americans the grief of having to read this tedious and self-serving tome.

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