Friday, August 31, 2007

The Race-Richard North Patterson

The Race
Richard North Patterson
Holt, Oct 2007, $26.00
ISBN: 9780805079487

During the Gulf War, Air Force pilot Corey Grace survived his jet’s crash and months of incarceration and torture from the enemy who ignored the Geneva Convention. He became a media darling as a real American hero. Over the thirteen years that have passed since his ordeal, Corey has become the Republican US Senator from Ohio and considered one of the 50 “sexiest men alive”.

Corey is running for his party’s presidential nomination. He has a reasonable chance of winning, but his handlers fear his telling the truth is harmful to his chances as much as his willingness to cross the aisle to work with the Democrats. His chief rivals are Senator Rob Marotta who is willing to pay the price of doing whatever his handler “The Darth Vader of American politics” demands including stretching, omitting, or misleading the facts; and Christian fundamentalist Reverend Bob Christy who considers Corey a heretic is also working against him.

With all the ethical and hypocritical issues coming out of DC and with rigging the executive branch to further a party over the country, Richard North Patterson’s latest thriller feels genuine. Turning Gore Vidal’s The Best Man upside down, Mr. Patterson makes the case that an honest person, even the greatest American hero, cannot easily win a party nomination for president because the other side plays loose with the facts and the media does not confront their swift assault in a timely manner. Readers will appreciate this exposure on honesty is the last choice in American politics.

Harriet Klausner