Rick Schmidt's prescient political thriller - he wrote the first draft pre-9/11 - is a brilliant gallop through half a century of US subterfuge, civil rights stand off, scandal and conspiracy from the Bay of Pigs to the Twin Towers and beyond. Taking as his starting point JFK's well documented promiscuity, Schmidt opens with the President' seduction of a devout, married, African-American woman. Within two years and a half years of the couple's single encounter, JFK is assassinated. In a haunting blend of pathos, courage and ambition, and against all conceivable adversity, their son rises from poverty to attain America's highest office.Schmidt skillfully weaves together the most important events and prominent figures of US modern history, reinterpreting events with the benefit of hindsight and an in-depth knowledge of the greatest American conspiracy theories. He takes us into Marilyn Monroe's bedroom, J Edgar Hoover's wardrobe and JFK's cabinet meetings. From here, he leads us into the brutality of assassination - JFK, Martin Luther King Jr and Bobby Kennedy - and then to the quagmire of Vietnam.