Christopher Buckley has given the world a hero to hate. Nick Naylor is the Tobacco Industry's public spokesman and despised by the media and anti-smoking forces alike. This humorously toned thriller set in Washington, DC amid the power struggles of the federal government, special interest groups and big corporations. Early on Nick becomes a kidnapping victim. An attempt on his life fails when the dozens of nicotine patches covering his body fail to kill him before he is found and hospitalized. Nick finds his health irrepairably damaged and weezes and coughs his way to solving the mystery of who is out to do him in.
Nick has only the counsel of two sympathetic friends and a benevolent benefactor who dies suddenly to aid him in battling the forces out to do him in. Those forces include his new boss at The Academy of Tobacco Studes as well as kidnappers, anonymous death threats and mysterous individuals with a stake in the fate of Big Tobacco. Suspicious deaths are now viewed in a new light and the mystery grows and takes on greater urgency as the story races toward a very satisfying ending.
This report prepared by David Fletcher