What kind of mayor Eric Adams could he be? No one seems to know.

Yet like any worthy storyteller, Mr. Adams made choices about what to emphasize and what to eliminate, carefully keeping some parts of himself and striving to recast others.

When his mother passed away earlier this year, he surprised his friends by not revealing it publicly for months, even as he continued to talk about her during the election campaign. He asked his siblings not to write about him on social media because it could create a “circus,” according to a Facebook comment from one of his brothers.

He says little about his first campaign: a congressional race in 1994, when he failed to vote, claiming his petition signatures had been stolen. Police said at the time that they found no evidence of this. Mr Adams also joined the Republican Party under the Giuliani administration and went out of his way to explain why, in turn calling the move a protest against the failure of Democratic leadership and saying he ultimately regrets it all.

Even his political background, his teenage arrest, has changed over time. He had long said that he and his older brother entered a prostitute’s house to take money she owed them for shopping. “We walked into this prostitute’s apartment,” Adams said in 2015.

In her interview with The Times, the woman was remade into “a go-go dancer we were helping who broke her leg.” If she had been a prostitute, he added: “I don’t know about that.”

Other changes and exclusions from Mr. Adams’ autobiography have gone from procedural to absurd. His political races have prompted investigations by electoral authorities and associated fines. For years, he failed to register his rental property in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, as required. He also failed to report rental income to the federal government and blamed his accountant, who Mr Adams said last year struggled to find because the man was living in a homeless shelter.

The final days of the primary were clouded over whether Mr. Adams even lived in New York City: After a Politico article chronicled the confusion over where he spent his nights, Mr. Adams invited cameras at the Brooklyn property, where he said he resided. The campaign hoped the tour would dispel suspicions that Mr. Adams lived in Fort Lee, New Jersey, where he owns a co-op with longtime partner Tracey Collins. He does not have. Reporters noted that the Brooklyn space included non-vegan food and sneakers that appeared to belong to Mr. Adams’ adult son Jordan Coleman.


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