The Hopefuls by Jennifer Close
Election season 2016, and the bookshelves are filled with books about Trump and Clinton, about grit and perseverance, about the state of affairs in Washington, the United States, the world. Taking a break from reading about our current campaigns, though not the topic, I read Jennifer Close’s new novel, The Hopefuls. Called a “lighter, funnier version of House of Cards,” and for readers who “love and miss The West Wing,” the temptation to read this roman a clef was great.
Beth and her husband Matt move to Washington DC from Manhattan so that Matt can work for President Obama’s campaign. Beth wrote for a magazine, but lets her career stall so she can be a stay at home wife with a part-time job at DCLove, a gossip blog. Matt progresses to campaign manager for a new and dynamic friend who is running for the Texas Railroad Commission, uprooting and moving to Houston for the campaign and election. Beth and Matt find themselves living with the candidate and his wife, and traveling the campaign trail, like it or not.
The Hopefuls was engaging, obviously based on some real life experience and happenings, (Jennifer Close used to work for Conde Nast and her husband for Obama) and was a delightful escape into the social side of politics–an insider’s view that certainly won’t sell the life style but is a nevertheless hard to put down and perfectly timed novel about many of the dichotomies of political life. Grab The Hopefuls and head to the beach or camp for one more witty, clever and most enjoyable summer read!