This is a well paced and well researched novel about broken families, and about a father’s search for the truth. Dr Paul Allen lives a comfortable life in New York with his second wife, Fran, and their twin sons, and he works as Chief of Rheumatology, specialising in diagnosing patients with conflicting symptoms. Then his world is turned upside down when his son from his first marriage, Daniel, is accused of killing Senator Seagram, the leading Democratic presidential candidate.
Dr Allen becomes obsessed with trying to prove his son’s innocence, and the story is told through alternating viewpoints; Daniel’s story, that of a confused young man who drops out of school and sets out to find himself; and Dr Allen’s examination of political assassins, determination to try and piece together the facts leading up to the events, and worry at how much his own lack of parenting may have contributed to his son’s actions.
It was a thought-provoking read, and a book I couldn’t put down, but I felt somehow that something was lacking – I was waiting for that ‘wow’ moment which didn’t quite deliver for me. But it was still a good read with lots to think & talk about. And quite a scary insight to gun culture in America – it’s terrifying to see how easily a confused kid can become something altogether more dangerous.
Scarily believable, I just felt it could have been somehow better.