The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Globe Life

July 18, 2008

Book review: Action-filled plot drives 'Executive Privilege'

‘Executive Privilege’

By Phillip Margolin (compact disc audiobook)

Phillip Margolin’s latest political thriller takes you inside the White House to the highest office in the land.

Dana Cutler, a private detective in Washington, D.C., gets an assignment from a prominent attorney with political connections to tail Charlotte Walsh. Her assignment is pretty boring until the night she takes pictures of the pretty college student and a man at a secret romantic meeting at a cabin in the woods. Dana narrowly escapes getting caught by the Secret Service and realizes that her life may be in danger when she discovers that the man that Charlotte met was Chris Farrington, President of the United States. Charlotte’s body is discovered the next day, and the murder is attributed to a serial killer active in the D.C. area.

Chris Farrington is a former governor of Portland, Ore., where Brad Miller, a young lawyer in huge law firm, is given a case to investigate — that of a convicted serial killer on death row. The serial killer has confessed to several murders, but he’s indignant and insists he is being framed for a murder he didn’t commit, that of a teenager who baby-sat for the Farringtons when she was killed. He provides Brad with the information necessary to prove his innocence in the murder.

The president is up for re-election but he feels the heat when a tabloid prints a story with Dana’s pictures. Both Dana and Brad believe that the president is somehow implicated in at least these two murders, but how is it possible for the president to slip out of the White House to murder someone?

Margolin uses believable characters, action-filled plots, and a surprise ending in his fast-paced thriller. The narrator, Jonathan Davis, is skilled at differentiating the multiple characters and delivers a solid performance. In addition to the multiple compact disc set, “Executive Privilege” is also available in regular print and the Playaway edition at the Joplin Public Library.

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