Maybe it was the ABRIDGED audiobook format...
...but I thought this one was a total dog of a book.
Published in 1999.
Read by Allison Janey
Duration: 2 hours, 46 minutes
Normally, I am a big fan of Grippando's books - they are interesting, full of lots of intrigue, unexpected twists and politics. I've reviewed several of them and have given them high marks. So, when I found one written about presidential politics and read by Allison Janney from West Wing I thought that this was bound to be a great book on tape.
However, the politics in this one was just silly. Before the action gets going in the book, Grippando has the two candidates, literally less than a week before the election, just sitting around their houses. Think about the last presidential election. Was Obama sitting around his house with 3 days to go? Was McCain? No - they were in the midst of a marathon of speeches and events that had been going on for at least a month. I remember when Bob Dole ran against Clinton - he literally made appearances for 48 hours straight - right through the night before election day and through election day until the polls were closed even though he was one of the oldest men to ever run for president.
-there's no secret service protecting these people or their relatives.
-people don't recognize the candidates when they are in public. Come on - Kerry, Bush, Gore, Clinton, Dole, McCain, Obama - they are forever ingrained in the minds of any TV-watching American, especially the day before the election.
-I was even more confused by the bad guy with the Italian last name and the Russian accent. Either Allison Janney is the worst actress ever with accents or they left out a vital piece of information in the abridgement.
***********Caution - Spoiler**********************
I was also bothered by the shallowness of the Attorney General / Democratic Presidential Candidate. Literally hours after she discovers the awful truth about her husband's involvement in her baby daughter's kidnapping - hours after her whole world has been turned upside down, she's busy making goo-goo eyes with the head of the FBI. Lame.
**************End of spoiler*********************
Grippando usually mentions Florida gubernatorial politics in his other thrillers. He is familiar with politics, but like many candidates who aspire to the national stage, I don't think he was ready for the presidential level when he wrote this book.
I give this one 2 stars out of 5.
This abridged audiobook can be found on Amazon.com here: The Abduction by James Grippando.
Reviewed on April 28, 2006.