I read it in less than 24 hours.
For all of you scholarly bookworms out there, this probably seems like nothing. But for a gal like me who has multiple research papers to write, videos to edit, and friends to hang out with, this is a big deal. Bottom line: Regardless of how busy you are, when you find a good book, you’ll make time.
Megyn Kelly’s Settle For More begins on what is easily the most talked about day of her life: Debate Day 2015. Ah yes, the day she made herself Public Enemy No. 1 of Mr. Donald J. Trump. After posing her now infamous question, which brought to light all of the negative, disparaging things Trump has said about women in the past, it was game on.
But what many of us didn’t know is that the game had long ago begun. Just as we’re getting a taste of what really ignited this inextinguishable fire, we’re launched back to Syracuse, N.Y. where one of the most famous women in news/journalism/politics/life? was born.
Here’s the thing about this book: It doesn’t so much drop crazy bombshells as it does fill in the pieces. While it’s most certainly not a tell-all – there is a lot that Ms. Kelly chooses to keep secret, as she should – it is still interesting. Very interesting. In a world where everyone is expected to always be politically correct – especially journalists – Kelly isn’t afraid to actually speak her mind. She doesn’t take herself too seriously (like the time she accidentally said “Fuckabee” instead of “Huckabee” on live television) and never tries to be anyone but herself. I think that’s her strength. She’s not “Megyn Kelly: Journalist” or “Megyn Kelly: Former Lawyer.” She’s just Megyn Kelly.
Her downfall – at least when it comes to this book – is that she’s not very relatable. I mean, how many people do you know who got rejected from a job for being “too perfect?” True story.
Even her very emotional bullying story was marred by the fact that she was voted “Most Popular” the very next year. It’s just kinda hard to empathize, ya know?
But that’s not to say she didn’t have her struggles. For all the laughs this book brings – and yes, I did laugh out loud on several occasions – there are also a few dark times, one of which, yes, is the Year of Trump. Prior to reading this, I never realized just how bad it was for her. Having to bring a bodyguard on a trip to Disney World is some serious business.
Kelly also hinted at having been poisoned by her driver on the day of The Debate when she suddenly fell horribly ill and began vomiting uncontrollably. But then she added, almost as an irrelevant afterthought, “I later learned there was a stomach virus going around – Rand Paul was also sick that night.” Personally, I think she included this last part for lawsuit purposes, but really does believe she was poisoned.
If you picked up this book just to hear juicy, salacious details, you might want to put it back down. Settle for More is very tastefully written, which is a nice way of saying she really doesn’t reveal too much. As a reader, this is always disappointing, but as a human being, I respect it. She’s not trying to trash anyone and she’s not trying to bring anyone down. Even with the whole “Donald Trump thing,” she’s not downright bashing him as much as she’s just telling her side of the story. Unfortunately for you, me, and every other nosy human in this world, the Megyn/Donald meeting inside Trump Tower was “off the record.” Oh, to be a fly on the wall…
One thing is clear, though: Donald Trump is relentless and Donald Trump is mean.
On another note, I’m sure many people bought this book just to hear all about Roger Ailes’ sexual harassment, and if that’s the case, they’ll be sorely disappointed. It was only a brief mention in the last chapter with very few details. She actually hadn’t planned on including any of this until her former colleague Gretchen Carlson came out in July with her own accusations against Ailes. It goes to show how much goes on behind closed doors that no one will ever know about…
In a 324-page book about one’s entire life, of course things are going to get left out. Still, I was disappointed to see just how much was. For instance, I never really felt like I got to “meet” her first husband, Dan. He was just someone briefly mentioned in passing. Similarly, she had applied to Syracuse University’s journalism program before she decided to become a lawyer, but got rejected. Nowhere was this mentioned in Settle for More. It makes you wonder what else she left out.
Still, this is the kind of book that you devour in a day (unless you’re some kind of scholarly bookworm and it’ll take you an hour, but we’ve already gone over this – I’m average). Hearing about her journey from three-figure-salary, corporate law badass to I’m going to throw it all away and accept a $17,000 reporting job instead is riveting.
It’s also fun to hear Kelly’s thoughts and opinions on various topics from sexual harassment to bullying to feminism. I’ve taken a special interest in Megyn Kelly and her story mostly because I love journalism and politics, but I also think this is a book for women in general. Kelly’s not one of those deluded, politically correct robots. Sexism exists, she says, and you want to know something? It’ll continue to exist. But you don’t have to let it stop you.
“You may not get invited to the bar with the boys. But do better, be better, and the odds are the hungover boys will soon be asking themselves how you keep getting such great opportunities.”
Sounds like a plan, Megyn.