“Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets” may have evoked bookstore frenzies upon its release, but Donald Trump and the so-called White House of Secrets had a “huuuge” debut of its own Friday.
Michael Wolff’s “Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House,” an explosive new book that purports to reveal skeletons inside the Oval Office, was originally slated for a Tuesday release.
But after the Guardian newspaper released controversial excerpts of the book earlier this week, the release date was changed to Friday after Trump’s lawyers demanded Thursday that the book’s release be stopped.
That left local bookstore owners like John Waite of Auntie’s Bookstore scrambling.
Waite said he expected a small heap of copies of the book to be shipped around the time of the original release date, but after the date was pushed, 21 copies landed in his store Friday afternoon.
Every copy already was reserved for purchase. By 6 p.m., just 10 of the books were waiting to be picked up. Thirty more were reserved by phone Friday.
“It’s interesting, but frustrating,” said Waite, who said he hopes to get about 80 copies by the middle of next week. “It originally wasn’t a book many people were talking about, then it blew up this week.
“It’s a unique creature. It’s emblematic of how the world works these days and how things can change so fast.”
Workers at both Barnes and Noble locations in Spokane County said they hadn’t yet received any copies of the book Friday, but had numerous calls and inquiries.
The book is already on back order on Amazon, with a ship date of at least two weeks.
Spokane attorney and self-proclaimed bookworm Paul Wasson put in calls around the area for the book and said he had no luck until calling Auntie’s on Thursday to reserve a copy.
Wasson said he was eager to pick up his coveted copy.
“Hopefully get it read before the weekend,” said Wasson, gripping his own limited copy of the fresh hardback.
Many area residents won’t have to purchase the book to read it. The Spokane and Spokane County libraries will soon carry the book, possibly as early as next week.
A Spokane Public Library employee said it has 23 copies on order, 20 more than he thought it would order a week ago. By Friday afternoon, the book had 84 reserve requests.
“I’ve never seen a rapid increase in such a short time,” said Robert Roose, the library’s support service director. “Eighty-three came within the last three days.”
The Spokane County Library District ordered 15 copies, allowing copies for each of its 11 locations, according to library district spokeswoman Jane Baker.
“The title just came up on our catalog this afternoon and we expect to see the number of holds jump,” Baker said.
Subscribe to the Morning Review newsletter
Get the day’s top headlines delivered to your inbox every morning by subscribing to our newsletter