Plus, four other books celebs have gifted
This one’s a page turner.
Former basketball player Dennis Rodman gifted North Korean leader Kim Jong Un with a copy of Donald Trump’s “The Art of the Deal” on Thursday. He handed the book — in which Trump outlines how to negotiate and some of the secrets to his success — to the country’s sports minister so he could give it to Kim Jong Un, the Associated Press reports. Other gifts included autographed basketball jerseys, soap, a mermaid jigsaw puzzle, and the book “Where’s Waldo? The Totally Essential Travel Collection.”
Why Rodman chose this interesting basket of gifts for Kim Jong Un isn’t clear — the Washington Post notes that this “may be a cheeky gesture on Rodman’s part.” But Rodman is friendly with both Donald Trump, who was his boss on Celebrity Apprentice, and Kim, who Rodman has called a “friend for life” and even once serenaded with the song “Happy Birthday” from the basketball court.
Whatever the reasons for the gifts, Rodman isn’t the first celeb to give the gift of a book. In 2009, Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez gifted president Obama with “The Open Veins of Latin America,” which “denounces both U.S. imperialism and the ruling élites of Latin America from a Marxist-Leninst perspective,” the New Yorker writes. When reporters asked about the gift, Obama quipped, “I thought it was one of Chávez’s books. I was going to give him one of mine.” The publisher should thank: The book jumped to the No. 11 spot on Amazon after Obama received it.
Bill Gates is famous for giving books. He has participated in the Reddit Secret Santa program for years and has given Reddit users a range of titles, including the travel book “Journeys of a Lifetime” and a Cajun cookbook. Former NBA star Shaquille O’Neill also participated in the program and gave his Reddit user a pop-up “Star Wars” book.
And the last gift that Steve Jobs ever gave to many of his friends, including Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff, was a book: “Autobiography of a Yogi” by Yogananda. Why that book? Benioff had a theory, which he shared at a TechCrunch Disrupt event: “If you look back at the history of Steve and that early trip to India…he had this incredible realization that his intuition was his greatest gift,” Benioff said. “He needed to look at world from inside out…his message was to look inside yourself and realize yourself.”
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