Wednesday, April 11, 2012

DEADLY POLITICS by Maggie Sefton

Date published: August 8, 2012
ISBN 9780738731285
Reviewed by Gina
Obtained Via Publisher/Netgalley (ARC)

Years ago, on the heels of her first husband, Dave’s death, Molly Malone packed up her children and moved to Colorado. She left behind the world of the Washington insider and pursued a different life. Now, decades after her husband’s death, a divorce from a second marriage behind her Molly has returned to Washington, D.C. to care for her aging mother. She arrives in a flurry of activity only to find out that the accounting job she was set to take, a job that would cover her mother’s expenses, has fallen through. Unsure of what to do next, her niece, Karen, thinks she may have something for her aunt. Karen works as a congressional aide with her pulse on the Washington power brokers. Molly quickly finds a job doing accounting for Senator John Russell. At first she is ambivalent about taking the job but the senator’s chief of staff, Peter, is quite persuasive. Within hours of starting the job Molly finds herself back in the hubbub that is political Washington without missing a beat.

And then things take a turn for the worse—her niece is found dead—shot to death in her car, outside a reception at the senator’s house. Heartbroken Molly can’t believe Karen’s death is simply a mugging gone bad. As she begins to dig secrets are revealed, endangering Molly. Is she savvy enough to escape the noose about to wrap itself around her?

I’m familiar with Maggie Sefton through her cozy mysteries, knitting mysteries. DEADLY POLITICS is a new venture for her. I’ve always enjoyed stories woven around political intrigue and DEADLY POLITICS appealed on several layers not only because of the political angle but because Molly is a mature adult rather than a winsome twenty-something. Don’t get me wrong, I like books with younger heroines falling in love for the first time. This one caught my attention because I saw the depth and maturity in Molly and wanted to see where Ms. Sefton went with it.

She touched on Viet Nam, lost love, broken love and rekindled love as well as told an interesting story. I wasn’t sure who did it till the very end.

Almost every chapter had Molly and whoever she was with drinking an alcoholic beverage, generally wine. I started to wonder if Molly, possibly because of all her losses, was an alcoholic. It would be interesting to see this as a thread in future stories with Molly, of course, overcoming it. She has the potential to be an inspirational character without being sappy. She’s a strong woman, she’s survived a tremendous amount in her life and has a lot more to go through given her mother’s dementia and niece’s death. Almost every chapter had a meal being eaten in it and having grown up on the east coast the descriptions of the meals, especially the seafood, made me a tad homesick. There is nothing in the world like east coast seafood. Hands down it is the best.

DEADLY POLITICS is written in the first person and one of the problems I have with first person is how they can seem to turn into a travelogue with little or no emotion. Molly seemed to get past Karen’s death far too easily – if her emotions were dulled due to the alcohol it wasn’t brought out in the story. Likewise, if it was just another in a long line of losses and potential losses, I didn’t get that feeling either. It was a missed opportunity.

If you like political intrigue DEADLY POLITICS is a solid bet. If you are looking for something different try Ms. Sefton and enjoy.

This is an objective review and not an endorsement of this book.

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