POLITICAL THRILLER EXAMINES CONGRESSMAN’S MANEUVERINGS IN PURSUIT OF POWER IN PARANOID 1950s
INQUISITION©, a mainstream novel by Jack Eddinger, examines the power game in which innocent lives face ruin when they become entangled in a politician’s cynical ambition. It explores the corrosion of human relationships arising from egotism and the relentless pursuit of power.
The protagonist, Zachary Taylor Harris, a powerful politician plays a deadly game with the lives of anyone entering his orbit. To keep the lid on his secret he projects the knowledge and certitude of a senior member of Congress and chairman of its most powerful investigative committee. Manipulation, innuendo and chicanery are his tools. Action ranges across a vast canvas stretching from Capitol Hill hearing rooms and Washington salons to Pennsylvania’s gritty Lenape Valley, to the World War II Balkans, and to a federal court room in Philadelphia where the drama unfolds before returning to the nation’s capital. INQUISITION’S timeline moves rapidly from the paranoid 1950s when witch-hunting is a spectator sport and the Mob is gaining a foothold in legitimate businesses, to New Deal and wartime Washington as government is expanding its reach, to obscure battle zones where Stalin’s NKVD tangles with the OSS.
The novel’s cast of characters includes:
- M.A. Burnham, a State Department adviser and war-hero with unorthodox political views, and his avant-garde wife, a gifted abstract expressionist, who stumble into Harris’s path and become perfect targets in his cover-up scheme,
- The Director, a cunning and powerful bureaucrat, who sees opportunity and personal advantage in a new investigative scenario proposed by the Congressman,
- Harris’s wife, Marion Hanson Harris, a woman of intelligence and passion, whose fortune and idealism have supported her husband’s career, but who now stands as an obstacle to his ambition,
- The beautiful and sultry Lenore Price, who loves him, but naively becomes a pawn in Harris’s power game,
- A crusading antagonist, Tom Daley Jr., who closes in on Harris’s secret,
- Charlie Miller, a canny, veteran newspaperman with a sense of history and conversant with power and its limitations, who puts the machinery of justice in motion,
- Lt. John Maggio, a detective whose career swings 180-degrees when he turns a humiliating defeat into victory,
- The one man Harris cannot afford to alienate, the incorruptible Speaker of the House, who upholds the Constitution and the rule of law against the congressman’s scheming ambition.
The author employs his understanding of Congress, Capitol Hill and the many dimensions and nuances of the American political process to weave a story of power, ambition, courage, love and other virtues and vices imparted by the game of politics.
Published by AuthorHouse of Bloomington, IN, INQUISITION can be purchased in hard cover and paperback on www.jackeddinger.com, authorhouse.com/BookStore, Amazon.com, Borders.com, B&N.com (Barnes & Noble), Waldenbooks.com and Booksamillion.com, as well as in bookstores. Reviewer galleys in electronic PDF/MS Word files or in hard copy are available from the author at www.jackeddinger.com or by phone (410) 435-6984