NEW YORK – It's high season for books that pick apart Donald Trump's presidency, and Rachel Maddow is a big beneficiary.
MSNBC's prime-time personality reached the second-biggest audience of her career when 5 million viewers tuned in for her Tuesday interview with Michael Cohen about his new book, “Disloyal: A Memoir: The True Story of the Former Personal Attorney to President Donald J. Trump.”
Only the 5.23 million who saw Maddow's July interview with presidential niece Mary Trump about her family tell-all exceeded that audience, the Nielsen company said. It was also the most-watched program in MSNBC's 24-year history.
With less than two months before the election, authors are elbowing each other for space on the best-seller lists. One key to success is having some revelations that grab headlines and attention for a news cycle or two.
Veteran Bob Woodward knows that drill. His status, and the presence of audiotape interviews he conducted with Trump for the book “Rage,” were key to him landing a slot on CBS' “60 Minutes” this Sunday, two days before publication date. He'll be on NBC's “Today” show the next morning.
Those shows reach a more mainstream audience than Maddow's and, in the case of “60 Minutes,” a larger one.
Conservative authors have also sought attention for new books during the political season. Autographed copies of Fox News Channel's Sean Hannity's new book, “Live Free or Die,” have been distributed to Trump campaign donors. Former White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders hit a promotional hot spot with a visit to “The View” this week.
But for people like Mary Trump, Cohen and Michael Schmidt, reporter for The New York Times and author of the just-released “Donald Trump vs. the United States,” Maddow offers a concentrated audience of potential buyers.