Red, White and Screwed
by Holly Bush
Political strategist Glenda Nelson is having a meltdown. Her handpicked, very married Congressional candidate was just caught climbing out of the window of the Sleepytown Motel, and her philandering ex-husband seems to have the most to gain from the colossal scandal that follows. As Glenda attempts to salvage the campaign in a hotly contested race, conservative and liberal pundits pounce on the story to further their own agendas.
Glenda’s love life is nonexistent to say the least, that is, until she meets handsome artist Chris Goodrich. Chris’s easy-going, carefree outlook on life couldn’t be more different than the 90-mph crazy train that is Glenda’s, but the more time she spends with him, the more she craves his calming presence, his sexy smile, and his steamy embraces. Is Chris the one to take a chance on?
Between the pressure of full-blown spin control mode, rapidly declining job security, refereeing two teenagers, caring for aging parents, and spending hours on her therapist’s couch trying to get past her ex’s crushing betrayal, Glenda finds love and makes the long trek back to happy.
Glenda gets her first look at the new man in her life.
“And now the moment we’ve all been waiting for. Our artist, Christopher Goodwich, was commissioned nearly a year ago and has come here from his home state of Ohio for tonight’s unveiling. He has won multiple accolades for his work, and the Goodwich Family Foundation is well-known among philanthropists. Mr. Goodwich, would you do the honors?”
Christopher Goodwich moved from his place in line, yanked a gold pull rope, and the black curtain fell away. I looked up at the thirty-foot mural of a Lancaster County Revolutionary War battle as did everyone else. To my amazement this typically chattering crowd fell silent other than a smattering of appreciative oohs and aahs.
The painting was stunningly beautiful. I could see the hope and fear on the faces of the soldiers and practically hear the roar of the cannons and smell the smoke. Our host grabbed the microphone again and began discussing the mural as if he had the foggiest understanding of artwork. But it made me curious about the artist, and I took a second look at Christopher Goodwich.
He was a handsome man. Casually masculine with green eyes and a smile that made me think about George Clooney in a tuxedo. Get those hormones under control, I thought. At forty-six with a rather ugly divorce under my belt and two teenage children, I needed a man like the President needed another Cabinet nominee in tax trouble.
What a great way to spend the day. Reading a book about an older woman finding her way back to her true self and finding love. Dealing with an ex-husband, teenagers, aging parents, the ‘perfect’ sister and her political job…Glenda has a lot on her plate. Did I mention the shrink visits, too?
What makes this book so special is that nothing is forced. Not one situation. And don’t think the kids are just window dressing either? They have their own issues dealing with the divorce and their mom’s new romance. Ms. Bush handles with the perfect teenage angst and you don’t want to slap them upside their heads. Frank and Sylvia are written beautifully and the interaction with Glenda and their father is spot on.
Chris is almost too perfect but he does have one flaw. He lives in another state. I know, it provided with some of the best scenes in the book but I also understood the ‘why’ he lived 7 hours away. Glenda needed to realize that she wanted Chris and in some way really needed Chris to bolstering her up. Yes, she did have the most growth in the book but when she finally realized that needing Chris in her life wasn’t a crutch, it made for some sigh worthy moments in the book. OMG…there’s this one time on the phone when Chris says…..Yes, I’m a tease and you have to read it.
But what really sealed the deal for me was the aging parent sub plot. I’m going through some of that in my own life and Ms. Bush didn’t sugar coat it. She put Glenda and her family through some real tough and real life situations. I cried when Glenda cried and felt her kids emotions. I went through those same emotions when I was Frank’s age.
One last thing…the political angle. Trust me, you do not have to be a savant in the world of politics to understand Glenda’s job and what she has to go through every day at the job. In some ways, its laugh out funny and in some, well…its pretty true to life. Melvin and Meg were great co-workers and well Grant, Glenda’s ex…he’s a piece of work. Read it and see if you agree.
If you are looking for a great all around book to read, pick up Red, White and Screwed. Your grandmother, mother, aunt will love it. Its funny, poignant and the romance between Glenda and Chris is perfection.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Holly Bush was born in western Pennsylvania to two avid readers. There was not a room in her home that did not hold a full bookcase. Holly has been a marketing consultant to start-up businesses and has done public speaking on the subject.
Holly has been writing all of her life and is a voracious reader of a wide variety of fiction and non-fiction, particularly political and historical works. She writes historical romance set on the American Prairie and in Victorian England, and more recently, Contemporary Romance and Women’s Fiction. She frequently attends writing conferences, and has always been a member of a writer’s group.
Holly is a gardener, a news junkie, has been an active member of her local library board and loves to spend time near the ocean. She is the proud mother of two daughters and the wife of a man more than a few years her junior.