A few copies of Bob Woodward's "Fear" lay on a small table Tuesday near the cash register at my friendly neighborhood Barnes & Noble.
I was surprised that Woodward's blockbuster detailing the incompetence of Donald Trump didn't receive a more prominent display.
While "Fear" might attract impulse buyers standing in the checkout line, the book had been placed inconspicuously away from the main display tables at the center of the store. Perhaps the B&N had landed only a few copies of the book, and didn't want to sell out too soon.
As I waited to buy the first Paris Review under new editor Emily Nemens, I overheard a lady ask a "bookseller" about Woodward's book. I myself was tempted to pick one up, but withstood the impulse. It occurred to me later that a first edition of the book might be valuable one day. But I think the media revelations about the book will be enough for me without plodding though the gray stretches of Woodwardese.
On Tuesday night, Woodward continued his media tour promoting the book with an interview on the Rachel Maddow show. Maddow's earnest, ingratiating manner and speculation that some of the book's revelations hinted at larger, more nefarious deeds seemed to perplex Woodward.
The veteran member of the Washington media establishment appeared caught off guard at Maddow's straying away from the established line of questioning he'd received on other shows. At times, he looked puzzled at her immersion in details and her speculative leaps. When Maddow went too far with one of her conclusions, he admonished her.
After those awkward moments, Woodward ended the show with a ringing condemnation of Trump and his "assault on the truth."
Woodward conceded to Maddow that Trump had "more pathways" to corruption and malfeasance than any other president about whom he'd written, a chilling statement from the man who played a major role in uncovering Nixon's Watergate.