This is a story about three women thrust into political and emotional battles as they try to thoughtfully navigate their own career survival.
On the heels of a terrorist attack on American soil, President Charlotte Kramer is being torn between managing her political reputation and being a stalwart source for the nation’s strength. She’s also battling her own demons including moving past the pain of her husband’s infidelity.
When she acquiesces to being followed for a day by a press team, little does she know that they will open this Pandora’s box. The shockwaves start with her interrogation on the passive aggressive remarks from her rebellious daughter that went viral on social media. While her press secretary Dale works to tamper down the effects, and turn the engagement around, her emotions get in the way when a former lover distracts her. Kramer’s secretary of state, Melanie, is also holding on to a thread keeping her own secrets close to the vest. With personal demons haunting them at every turn, the three women work tirelessly to maintain a calm front in the face of crisis.
Former White House Communications Director Nicolle Wallace, with her contemporary novel, shares three powerful women’s perspectives of life in the West Wing.
Once you’ve been introduced to each of these women, you identify with their plight of staying hyper-focused on fulfilling career expectations and attending to their personal lives and strained relationships.
I appreciate the political layering this book presents along with its stirring plot. While Wallace paints a detailed and clearly experienced portrait of a day in the life of these power-filled roles, her story highlights the double edge sword of female empowerment. Every woman understands the imbalance these leaders face, shattering the glass ceiling and still being challenged to maintain the role of wife, mother and partner. Those in their midst who don’t believe they are capable look for ways to throw them off their paths and chip away at all that they’ve built. Each character views and addresses this challenge uniquely and I believe that breadth of their approach allows readers to find a character that they can identify with. This formula always makes for a great read.