Jared Kushner's 'soulless' White House memoir torn to pieces in New York Times review
Jared Kushner speaking with attendees at the 2019 Teen Student Action Summit. (Gage Skidmore/Flickr)

Jared Kushner's new memoir was met with a scathing review from the New York Times, which panned the former White House adviser's book as "soulless" and lacking in self-awareness.

Donald Trump's son-in-law and former adviser describes his four years in the White House, but Times book critic Dwight Garner lambastes the memoir as dull, superficial and self-serving in a strongly negative review of Breaking History, published last week by HarperCollins.

"Kushner looks like a mannequin, and he writes like one," Garner writes. "Kushner almost entirely ignores the chaos, the alienation of allies, the breaking of laws and norms, the flirtations with dictators, the comprehensive loss of America’s moral leadership, and so on, ad infinitum, to speak about his boyish tinkering ... with issues he was interested in."

Garner compares the tone to a college admissions essay, speckled with "every drop of praise he's ever received," larded with clichés and glossed with selective biographical background, and he said the overall effect was off-putting and slightly disgusting.

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"This book is like a tour of a once majestic 18th-century wooden house, now burned to its foundations, that focuses solely on, and rejoices in, what’s left amid the ashes: the two singed bathtubs, the gravel driveway and the mailbox," Garner writes. "Kushner’s fealty to Trump remains absolute. Reading this book reminded me of watching a cat lick a dog’s eye goo."

It's not clear who the intended audience is supposed to be, Garner writes, because Trump's base never liked him and Kushner's career in politics was entirely dependent on his marriage to the president's daughter Ivanka Trump.

"What a queasy-making book to have in your hands," Garner writes. "Once someone has happily worked alongside one of the most flagrant and systematic and powerful liars in this country’s history, how can anyone be expected to believe a word they say?"

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