According to a USA Today interview on the video that follows, Patterson and Clinton sat down to create the best book about the presidency that has ever been written. I do not think they achieved that goal. They did write a sometimes entertaining fictional story in which the President of the United States struggles to deal with a potential cyber attack and the possible destruction of the American way of life when a terrorist sets out to destroy the internet, its servers and all the computers in the United States. The President attempts to do so with the help of a small handful of trusted staff members.
I found the book a bit hard to get into and at times drawn out. In particular, I found the last section, where the President’s address goes on for far too long, unnecessary. However, the book does give us a look into the inner workings, though obviously no secrets, of the U.S. government and it includes some humorous moments and a very likable though not perfect President.
The Guardian calls Clinton’s involvement one of the great things about this book and says that it is almost a “guarantee of political authenticity.” They go on to say that it feels like the “outcome of a conversation between one writer with an unusual skill at thriller plotting and another with an exceptional grasp of global politics.” I agree and I believe that there is value to the reader who is interested in that authenticity.
On a more serious note, The President is Missing deals with our dependence on the internet. Take a moment and think about what we could or could not do without the internet and computers. You will come up with a long, long list that includes banking, healthcare, transportation and so much more. After reading this book, you may decide to keep some cash under your mattress.
Despite having a hard time starting the book and the sometimes drawn out parts, I did enjoy it. It was not a favorite though and I cannot give it my ‘Highly Recommended’ rating but I would recommend it if you are interested in a peek into the government, you enjoy reading thrillers and are willing to tolerate the slow parts.
What Did Others Think?
For starters, the book was a Number 1 New York Times, USA Today, Wall Street Journal and Amazon bestseller though that is I am sure in great part due to the two names on the cover.
You will find that Amazon customer reviews are all over the place with 77 percent of them being 5 or 4 star. I do not think that is great but nor is it really that bad.
The Washington Post calls the book an awkward duet and writer Ron Charles calls it our for the being the obvious marketing ploy that it is. Two big names, one book. True, I suppose.
To the detriment of the book, The Guardian says, "This novel is indeed missing several things, including a believable plot and even the remotest sense of narrative tension." I would counter with it is a fictional thriller.
The Independent calls it “absurdly boring.” I think that is an extreme position though the book had its moments.
Despite the comments and reviews from those parties, I believe that the following interview from Today with both of the authors may help you decide you want to read the book despite the shortcomings.
Once again, I can and do recommend this book if you are interested in the inner workings of the government, you enjoy a thriller and James Patterson and you can tolerate the slow parts. You can find your copy of The President is Missing on Amazon by clicking right here. Of note, The President is Missing may soon become a movie or television mini-series.
If you do read this book, be sure to come back and let us know what you thought. Was it a good read? Was it interesting despite the issues mentioned above? Would you recommend it to a friend?
at the book store!
Treasures By Brenda
Buy your copy of The President is Missing on Amazon.
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