Hunter Biden is out with a memoir, and if you're wondering whether the 51-year-old touches on President Trump, Ukraine, his crack addiction, and his relationship with his late brother's wife, the answer is yes. The book is due to be released next Tuesday, and the AP reports Biden started it well before his father's run for president. Among the standout details from Beautiful Things, based on copies obtained by the New York Times and the Guardian:
- On President Trump: "A vile man with a vile mission." And "he pushed debunked conspiracy theories about work I did in Ukraine and China, even as his own children had pocketed millions in China and Russia."
- On joining the board of Ukrainian gas company Burisma: If he got a do-over, Biden writes that he wouldn't do it again. Still, "in our current political environment, I don't believe it would make any difference if I took that seat or not. I'd be attacked anyway. ... The attacks weren't intended for me. They were meant to wound my dad." He said he did nothing unethical in joining the board, and that the ensuing controversy was "remarkable for its epic banality."
- On the accident that killed his mother and sister in 1972: He recalls, as a 3-year-old, seeing his mother turn and look to the right. Their car was hit by a tractor-trailer, and Biden's next memory was of being in a hospital bed next to Beau. "He's mouthing three words to me, over and over: 'I love you. I love you. I love you.' That's our origin story."
- On his addictions: "When I was not quite a year sober, as I worked on the early parts of this book, crack remained the first thing I thought about every morning when I woke up. ... I've bought crack cocaine on the streets of Washington, DC, and cooked up my own inside a hotel bungalow in Los Angeles."
- On the benefits of having the name "Biden": He admits he has gotten a leg up because of it, but "I am not Eric Trump or Donald Trump Jr. I've worked for someone other than my father. I rose and fell on my own."
- On his short relationship with brother Beau's widow, Hallie: "Our relationship had begun as a mutually desperate grasping for love we both had lost, and its dissolution only deepened that tragedy."
- On meeting his now-wife, Melissa Cohen: Two hours after meeting, he told her he was addicted to crack. "Not anymore. You're finished with that," she replied.
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