I Do Solemnly Swear Reviewed By Gordon Osmond of
Gordon Osmond

Reviewer Gordon Osmond : Gordon is a produced and award-winning playwright and author of: So You Think You Know English--A Guide to English for Those Who Think They Don't Need One, Wet Firecrackers--The Unauthorized Autobiography of Gordon Osmond and his debut novel Slipping on Stardust.

He has reviewed books and stageplays for and for the Bertha Klausner International Literary Agency. He is a graduate of Columbia College and Columbia Law School and practiced law on Wall Street for many years before concentrating on writing fiction and non-fiction. You can find out more about Gordon by clicking HERE

Gordon can also be heard on the Electic Authors Showcase.

By Gordon Osmond
Published on April 24, 2013

Author:D. M. Annechino

Publisher:Thomas & Mercer


Author:D. M. Annechino

Publisher:Thomas & Mercer


Picture this, possibly the most toxic vision of politicians from both parties: Sarah Palin is President of the United States and Nancy Pelosi is Vice-President. Science fiction or a sequel to Friday, the 13th? No, actually, it is not too much of a stretch from the scenario that author Annechino posits in his excellent novel of murder, scandal, and international intrigue as seen through the windows of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

Katherine Miles, the energetic and comely governor of Kansas, is chosen by presidential nominee David Rogers, and later by the people, to be vice-president of the U.S. Shortly after that, she ascends to the presidency and chooses the speaker of the house to be vice-president pro tem even though he’s the head of a different political party.

In her first weeks in office President Miles comes to grip with an impressive series of political and personal crises, including, without limitation, the shortcomings of her chubby hubby, evidence that her predecessor in office’s demise was not from natural causes, and struggles to populate her cabinet and staff with loyalists.

Annechino is not, however, content to deal with past or present occurrences that are familiar to followers of current political affairs. He has President Miles take an action, the projected consequences of which have been extensively discussed and analyzed, but not, until now, actually dealt with as a done deal. This action provides the spine of the story, and it is a strong and compelling one.

As Katherine’s story unfolds, Annechino throws sub-plots and flashbacks into the air and juggles them with considerable skill. Although the author’s strong point for this reviewer is clarity, his narrative is anything but sterile, featuring wonderful similes and, to a much lesser extent, metaphors. There are also phrases of genuine eloquence and elegance which aerate the basic realism of the story. Although male, the author evidences substantial sensitivity to the frustrations of bright women surrounded by insecure males. And when it comes to dealing with gore, the author successfully negotiates the line between pungency and vulgarity. Turning a target’s “organs into oatmeal” is both alliterative and unforgettable.

Humor does not figure prominently in this work, but when Kate’s service in Kansas is described as going “against the grain,” I confess to a good smile.

A tribute to the author’s proficiency in telling his story clearly is that his introductory cast of characters (of the kind one would expect to find in a playbill) is largely unnecessary, especially as this is a book that will probably be taken in in relatively few reading installments.

If ever a book had a sequel in the author’s mind, this is it. A couple of giant hooks are introduced in the novel’s final pages, one of which seems somewhat gratuitous. The author’s almost comic overuse of brand names suggests that he may also have in mind a film version of his book, where product promotion can help the production budget.

The book is fairly well edited although a couple of familiar lapses—lay/lie, between/among have crept in along with a few exotic vocabulary choices. Of course, none of these will detract from the reader’s enjoyment of this juicy and engaging projection of what the political future of the United States might involve.

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