Last week Mashable shared a look at a surprising new book meant to posit virtues of the U.S. president-elect.
Its title, Why Trump Deserves Trust, Respect & Admiration, is likely off-putting to those who don’t support the normalization of Donald Trump’s manners and mantras. And the book’s author, David King, would agree: His new release is filled with blank pages.
“Despite years of research, we could not find anything to say on this subject, so please feel free to use this book for notes,” reads the book’s Amazon description.
It’s a self-published prank that anti-Trumpers will appreciate ― and an example of how trolling can be harsh without using harsh language. In late 2016, vocal Trump supporters pulled some book-related stunts that seemed less satirical and more harmful, targeting individual writers instead of a public figure.
In November, Fox News reporter Megyn Kelly accrued a number of one-star Amazon reviews on her book Settle for More. Suspiciously, the reviews focused not on the book itself but on choices she made as a debate moderator; once 76 percent of reviewers gave the book just one star, Amazon moved to delete the more nefarious ratings.
In September, a similar attempt was made to bring down the overall rating of Laura Silverman’s Girl Out of Water on Goodreads. Silverman, a Jewish writer who had expressed her political beliefs on Twitter, received a bevy of one-star reviews related to her opinions rather than her writing, before review copies of the book were even sent out. “She is literally worse than Hitler,” one reviewer wrote.
The Amazon ratings on King’s book, on the other hand, are mixed, but uniformly civil. Those who enjoyed the prank took it a step further with puns and limericks; those who didn’t had quips of their own. It all shows that effective satire ― that is, humor that punches up ― can catalyze playful debate.
Why Trump Deserves Trust, Respect & Admiration is now available in paperback.