Book covers from Mary Trump (L), John Bolton (C) and Mary Jordan (R)
Two books expected to be highly critical of President Donald Trump — one by his niece Mary, the other by his former national security advisor John Bolton — are among the top-selling books on online retail giant Amazon even though they have yet to be released.
Bolton’s book “The Room Where it Happened,” which the Justice Department sued to block the release of on Tuesday night, was the No. 1 bestseller on Amazon on Wednesday morning based on presale orders, according to the site’s sales tracker.
The suit claims that Bolton has not finished a review process required of authors who had government security clearance. Bolton’s book is due to be published Tuesday. The Justice Department late on Wednesday filed an emergency application for a temporary restraining order and a motion for a preliminary injunction against Bolton to prevent the publication of his book, NBC News reported. The motion asks the court to schedule a hearing on Friday, four days before the book is scheduled to be released.
Mary Trump’s book, which President Trump reportedly is considering legal action against, was the No. 5 bestseller on Amazon, more than a month before its official publication date.
Her book, which comes as President Trump is seeking reelection, is titled, “Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man.”
A third book, about first lady Melania Trump, is also selling well on Amazon, according to the site’s sales tracker.
That book, “The Art of Her Deal,” was No. 49 on the sales chart a day after it was published by Simon & Schuster — the same publisher of the books by Bolton and Mary Trump.
The book was written by Washington Post journalist Mary Jordan, who reports that the first lady renegotiated the terms of her prenuptial agreement with the president before she moved into the White House with their son, Barron, months after the president was inaugurated.
Melania Trump’s spokeswoman has called it “yet another book about Mrs. Trump with false information and sources. This book belongs in the fiction genre.”
Daily Beast reporter Lachlan Cartwright on Sunday broke the news that Mary Trump was coming out with a book, which will detail “harrowing and salacious stories” about the president.
The news site also reported the book will detail the previously undisclosed fact that Mary Trump was the main source for a Pulitzer Prize-winning series by The New York Times, which alleged that President Trump “participated in dubious tax schemes during the 1990s, including instances of outright fraud, that greatly increased the fortune he received from his parents.”
The Times stories relied on tax returns by the president’s father, Fred Trump Sr., and other private family financial records, according to The Daily Beast.
The newspaper reported that while Donald Trump won the presidency proclaiming himself a self-made billionaire, he had in fact “received the equivalent today of at least $413 million from his father’s real estate empire, starting when he was a toddler and continuing to this day.”
On Tuesday night, The Daily Beast reported that the president was having his lawyers examine the situation with Mary, who is the daughter of his eldest brother, the late Fred Trump Jr.
A source quoted by the site said that Trump has mentioned that Mary Trump signed a nondisclosure agreement on the heels of a 2001 settlement following litigation over the estate of Fred Trump Jr.
The Daily Beast reported that the NDA says Mary Trump cannot publish things about that legal fight or her relationship with President Trump or two of his surviving siblings, retired federal appeals judge Maryanne Trump Barry and Robert Trump.
Simon & Schuster, which did not immediately respond to a request for comment, on its web site says Mary Trump’s book is a “revelatory, authoritative portrait of Donald J. Trump and the toxic family that made him.”
The site said Mary Trump “shines a bright light on the dark history of their family in order to explain how her uncle became the man who now threatens the world’s health, economic security, and social fabric.”
In a statement issued Tuesday night after the Justice Department sued to block release of Bolton’s book, the publisher called the action “nothing more than the latest in a long running series of efforts by the Administration to quash publication of a book it deems unflattering to the President.”
“Ambassador Bolton has worked in full cooperation with the NSC in its pre-publication review to address its concerns and Simon & Schuster fully supports his First Amendment right to tell the story of his time in the White House to the American public,” the publisher said.
The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment from CNBC about Mary Trump’s book.
CNBC also has requested comment from Trump’s lawyer, Charles Harder.
Harder in late April sent Trump’s former personal lawyer Michael Cohen a letter warning him that he would be at legal risk if he wrote a book about working for Trump.
The letter came almost two weeks after The Daily Beast reported that Cohen, who at the time was locked up in federal prison, had been “writing an explosive tell-all book about his stint” as Trump’s lawyer “and plans on releasing it before the election.”
Cohen, who had been serving a three-year sentence for multiple crimes, was released early from prison on May 21 into home confinement because of concerns about the coronavirus spreading in the federal correctional system.