I first read this book back in the 1970s. It didn't disappoint the second time around. Anna Hastings came to Washington as a young journalist during WW2 and through her intelligence,charm and determination rises to the top of the heap there in newpaper world. Along the way, she rises over friends and enemies to her detriment. You admire her and hate her at the same time.
In late '43, Allen Drury was a 25-year old army veteran looking for work. A position as the US Senate correspondent for United Press International provided him not only with employment, but with insider knowledge of the Senate. In addition to fulfilling his duties as a reporter, he kept a journal of his views of the Senate & individual senators. In addition to the Senate personalities, his jouIn late '43, Allen Drury was a 25-year old army veteran looking for work. A position as the US Senate correspondent for United Press International provided him not only with employment, but with insider knowledge of the Senate. In addition to fulfilling his duties as a reporter, he kept a journal of his views of the Senate & individual senators. In addition to the Senate personalities, his journal captured the events of the 78th & 79th Congresses. Altho written in the mid-40s, his diary was not published until '63. 'A Senate Journal' found an audience in part because of the great success of 'Advise & Consent', his '59 novel about the Senate's consideration of a controversial nominee for Secretary of State. His greatest success was 'Advise & Consent', which was made into a film in '62. The book was partly inspired by the suicide of Wyoming Senator Lester C. Hunt. It spent 102 weeks on the NY Times' best-seller list. 'Advise & Consent' led to several sequels. 'A Shade of Difference' is set a year later. Drury then turned his attention to the next presidential election after those events with 'Capable of Honor' & 'Preserve & Protect'. He then wrote two alternative sequels based on a different outcome of an assassination attack in an earlier work: 'Come Nineveh, Come Tyre' & 'The Promise of Joy'. In 1971, he published 'The Throne of Saturn', a sf novel about the 1st attempt at sending a manned mission to Mars. He dedicated the work "To the US Astronauts & those who help them fly." Political characters in the book are archetypal rather than comfortably human. The book carries a strong anti-communist flavor. The book has a lot to say about interference in the space program by leftist Americans. Having wrapped up his political series by '75, Drury began a new one with the '77 novel 'Anna Hastings', more about journalism than politics. He returned to the timeline in '79, with the political novel 'Mark Coffin USS' (tho the main relationship between the two books was that Hastings was a minor character in 'Mark Coffin USS's sequels). It was succeeded, by the two-part 'The Hill of Summer' & 'The Roads of Earth', which are true sequels to 'Mark Coffin USS' He also wrote stand-alone novels, 'Decision' & 'Pentagon', as well as several other fiction & non-fiction works. His political novels have been described as page-turners, set against the Cold War, with an aggressive USSR seeking to undermine the USA. Drury lived in Tiburon, CA from '64 until his '98 cardiac arrest. He'd completed his 20th novel, 'Public Men' set at Stanford, just two weeks before his death. He died on 9/2/98 at St Mary's Medical Center in San Francisco, on his 80th birthday. He never married.--Wikipedia (edited)...more