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Cooper Lanier has been surrounded by politics her entire life. Her late father, Cleve Spainhour, was a beloved two-term Southern governor, as was her husband, Pickett Lanier. Now, Cooper is taking office as governor herself, succeeding Pickett as he campaigns for president.
On her first day, as the state is blindsided by a blizzard, Cooper quickly realizes she is surrounded by leftovers from her husband’s administration and that Pickett intends to manage the state’s affairs from the campaign trail, even if it means undermining her every command. Cooper is faced with the stark choice of seizing control or becoming a phony, irrelevant figurehead. Smart, feisty, and independent, Cooper follows her instincts and takes charge.
Her political rift with Pickett mirrors their unraveling relationship. Pickett’s obsession with politics has pulled him farther and farther from her. Since childhood, Cooper has thought of politics as a thief that steals everyone she loves. She has mostly blamed her mother, Mickey Spainhour, a once-prominent political mastermind. When Cooper discovers the breadth of Pickett’s back-room dealings, and just how far he’s willing to go to become president, she realizes she must learn to use her political pedigree and instincts to serve her state. Struggling to chart a course through the treacherous shoals of male-dominated politics, she finds unexpected allies in the ailing Mickey, from whom she has been estranged for years, and Wheeler Kincaid, a crusty, aging newspaper reporter.
The Governor’s Lady shows how politics brings out the best and worst in people and how the public arena affects politicians’ values and relationships. The novel will appeal to those interested in a deeper understanding of the subtexts and complexities of American politics and the growing role of women in the political landscape.
Novelist, screenwriter, and playwright Robert Inman is a native of Elba, Alabama. He left a 31-year career in journalism in June 1996 to devote full time to writing. He is the author of four novels and he has written screenplays for six motion pictures for television, two of which have been “Hallmark Hall of Fame” presentations. His script for The Summer of Ben Tyler, a Hallmark production, won the Writers’ Guild of America Award as the best original television screenplay of 1997. His other Hallmark feature was Home Fires Burning, a 1989 adaptation of his novel.