The United States is in the midst of a brutal election campaign and friends Zoe, Celia, Georgie and Kate have to resolve their relationships and decide where their loyalties lie. Four ambitious women who have been lifelong friends - foreign affairs specialist Zoe Vaughn, Republican congresswoman Georgie Hughes, television journalist Celia Porter and social activist Kate Seigel – are drawn into the whirlwind that is the US presidential election. Democratic hopefuls Benjamin Night and MacKenton have to battle it out in the primaries to be selected as the party nominee. The Republicans have a former army general Scottie Edwards as their prime candidate. Meanwhile, Russian extremists have kidnapped several innocent American children and civilians from different parts of the world and the American public wants decisive action from their government.
Click here to see the rest of this review
Zoe Vaughn, who was unceremoniously removed her post in the foreign affairs division during her previous tenure, is asked by Benjamin Knight to join his team as a foreign policy specialist. Zoe and Ben were involved while in college but Ben got married to a wealthy socialite Felicia who later died in an accident. If Ben wins, Zoe will also get a second chance to redeem herself and save her career.
Georgie is trapped in an ugly marriage with businessman Lyle Mercer but is unable to divorce him because he knows a terrible secret that has the power to turn the conservative public against her. When Scottie chooses her as his vice-presidential candidate, Georgie has to decide whether she wants to pursue her political ambitions and let her unhappy marriage continue or divorce Lyle and choose a future with a man who loves her.
Celia Porter is given the chance of following Edwards during the election campaign. When Celia exposes Edwards's woeful command over important issues, Edward's campaign manager Clay Chandler hands her a scandalous story involving Zoe and threatens to harm Celia's family if she does not publish it. Clay has a vendetta against Ben and wants to make sure that Ben's team is destroyed.
Kate's 11-year-old daughter Mira was kidnapped and raped by a prisoner on parole. Both Kate and her husband Rick are embroiled in a web of anger and guilt over their inability to save their daughter and have become separated. Kate and Ben are college friends and Rick also joins his campaign team to help them manage their advertisements. The campaign brings them together and gives them a second chance at saving their marriage.
Ben defeats Kenton in the primaries and gets chosen as the Democratic candidate in spite of Kenton's effort to blackmail Ben with a shameful secret about his family. Ben and Zoe are attracted to each other but Zoe fears that someone may be out to hurt her and everyone close to her. A few of her former associates who worked with her in Russia have either been killed or hurt in some way or the other. Zoe fears that Ben may be killed and tells him that she does not want to take their relationship to the next level. The hostage issue is nearing its climax and Zoe realizes a starting truth about the crisis.
Best part of story, including ending:
The book is fast-paced and has no dull moments to bore you. The characters are realistic and the changes in their relationships with years and under challenging circumstances are portrayed beautifully.
Best scene in story:
The entire Knight family, including Ben, his mother and his two young children, proposes to Zoe before the election results are announced and asks her to join their family. Zoe is touched by the obvious affection they have for her.
Opinion about the main character:
Zoe is without doubt the central character in the book. She is a strong woman who in spite of being betrayed by Ben when they were young harbours no ill-feelings towards him. She is ambitious and excellent at her career but at the same time, caring and loving when it comes to her family and friends.