The reviews are in: Ivanka Trump’s new book is “vapid” at worst, “earnest” at best, and “a strawberry milkshake of inspirational quotes” somewhere in between.
Women Who Work: Rewriting the Rules for Success went on sale Tuesday and seemed to immediately incite criticism from all corners of the internet. Trump has explained that the book is meant to “inspire you to redefine success and architect a life that honors your individual passions and priorities.” However, the self-help disquisition has been described in noticeably harsher terms in the book reviews that have come out since its release.
Take, for example, The New York Times’ Jennifer Senior, who indeed described the book as “a strawberry milkshake of inspirational quotes” “perfect for a generation weaned on Pinterest and ,” adding:
Self-actualization is the all-consuming preoccupation of “Women Who Work.” In this way, the book is not really offensive so much as witlessly derivative, endlessly recapitulating the wisdom of other, canonical self-help and business books — by Stephen Covey, Simon Sinek, Shawn Achor, Adam Grant. (Profiting handsomely off the hard work of others appears to be a signature Trumpian trait.) For a while, it reads like the best valedictorian speech ever.
Business Insider’s Kate Taylor agrees, at least when it comes to Trump’s penchant for regurgitating other people’s advice.
The book […] reads like a mashup of countless essays and articles written in the past decade aimed at female entrepreneurs.
That isn’t to say all the advice is bad — it’s just that little is new. The book borrows heavily from books like Sheryl Sandberg’s “Lean In,” Joanna Barsh and Susie Cranston’s “How Remarkable Women Lead,” and backlogs of.
So does NPR’s Danielle Kurtzleben:
Often, the melange of quotes and how-to lists give the book more the aesthetic of a Pinterest board than a career guide.