It is springtime and a year has passed since Will Martin married Renee Carr. He is attempting to track down her ex-husband Gary Carr as Martin wishes to adopt Renee's son Justin. Fearing that it may lead to disappointing the people he loves he decides to keep his objective to himself. He is unable to locate Carr in Paris at ETC, a multinational computer corporation where it was thought he was employed. At the same time Martin embarks on a large construction project to provide a mixed residential and commercial community. It is the first time for his company Martin Real Estate to attempt such an ambitious undertaking and he is fraught with doubt, especially when the two building contractors turn out to be bitter rivals. Enter David Jobb, long-time advisor and campaign director for multi-term state senator Creighton Barrow. Jobb proposes that Martinseek the seat soon to be vacated by Barrow who is dying of cancer. Martin is willing to run but thinks he has bitten off more than he can chew.
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The speculative development project and the race for the state senate seat preoccupy nearly all of his time and thoughts, but still Martin finds time to coach Justin in the finer points of baseball in order to make the local little league team as the starting first baseman. As the project slowly enters the planning and approval stage he becomes aware of the underhanded nature of his political opponent Milton Phillips. Phillips leads a group of hired protestors to raise false claims about the environmental impact of the new construction. Over the course of the next several months, it becomes obvious that Phillips is out to win the election using every dirty trick from running doctored photos of Martin with an ex-girlfriend in the daily paper to stealing campaign signs. Martin refuses to stoop to his level and continues to run a clean and honest race for election. He sets a goal for himself to find Gary Carr by Christmas or else post a notice of adoption in the paper. All of the information about Carr seems to be fraudulent and he is worried the adoption may meet with some unforeseen problems.
By September his campaign team includes Jobb, the newly widowed Louise Barrow, Renee, and his grandmother Ruth Martin. They pool ideas and resources as the election heats up. The project looks to be a winner and is finding new tenants for the retail construction and the residential component is flooded with sales as well. Unbelievably, the election results in a recount (very trendy situation these days) with only 2 votes separating the two candidates. The results of the election will not be official until just before Christmas, at about the same time that Justin's adoption will be go before the local magistrate, if no one steps forward to oppose it.
The review of this Book prepared by David Fletcher