Picks and Pans Review: The Incumbent
Page-turner of the week
This could be the most momentous day of Jack Flynn's life—if he manages to survive it. Less than two weeks before voting day in a deadlocked presidential race, the White House correspondent finds himself at the Congressional Country Club teeing off at 6 a.m. with incumbent President Clayton Hutchins, up for reelection. On the 10th hole, Hutchins invites Flynn to be his next press secretary. Then shots ring out across the fairway. Suddenly the reporter is in the middle of the hottest scoop in the country. But cracking the murderous puzzle behind that story—in the face of determined spinning by government officials—proves lethally dangerous.
Unlike many journalists who try their hand at fiction only to produce amateurish, barely disguised romans à clef, columnist and former Boston Globe White House correspondent McGrory has crafted a noteworthy first novel with heft and heart. Equally savvy about the electoral process, investigative journalism and human nature—yet still romantic at its core—The Incumbent ranks as one candidate that deserves to win by a landslide. (Pocket, $24.95)
Bottom Line: First-rate political thriller
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