Kensington, Aug 2001, 6.99, 384 pp.
There is three weeks to go in the Virginia race for the US Senate when the Lou Kay camp begins to attack their opponent's wealth and residence. Frank Miles knows that his candidate Mel Merdock is in trouble and seems on the verge of losing. He needs a new strategy and not just one that tries to counter the Kay attack, which is quite accurate.
However, Frank, whose reputation is to do anything to win, including destroy a life with a lie (just ask Ozzie Olson) now has a new problem. Apparently, a teen with a record broke into his office and murdered Frank's partner, who in turn killed his slayer. Frank sees inconsistencies with the police description of the crime. He begins his own investigation, following a trail of corpses that will show how far candidates will go to become elected.
Does the premise behind ACCESS TO POWER seem implausible? At first perhaps yes, but when one considers some of the incidents in real life elections in other areas, perhaps this fast-paced story line could happen. This tale works because Frank seems genuine as he takes one step leading to several others before he realizes his life is in jeopardy. Though why Frank became a target of the killer is not clear, Robert Ellis has written a novel that depicts the potential extremes in today's election system. More than just John McCain will enjoy this interesting political thriller.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner