THE BEST LAID PLANS
By Sidney Sheldon
372 pages, William Marrow and Company
Like every Sidney Sheldon’s novel, ‘Best Laid Plans’ is very different from cliché and easily forgotten fiction. It is a tale of two people, Oliver and Leslie, who are to be wed but fate has some other things planned for them. It is story of politics, money and deception.
Oliver Russell is destined to reach the zenith of power, and to become the President of United States. On his way to success, he deceits his beautiful and successful fiancé, Leslie. Heartbroken and angry, Leslie marries an old media tycoon to gain money and power. When Leslie Stewart looks back on her fortieth birthday, after amassing Media Empire of her own, she finds herself unsatisfied. She wants revenge from her cheating ex-fiancé, Oliver Russell. She strikes when Oliver reaches the White House. She does everything in her power to tarnish his image. Oliver is an idealistic but lecherous president. He is hiding something but will Leslie be able to expose him? What happens when his secrets are out of the bag? Is he the one who is behind the death of rape and murder of 16-year old, Chloe Houston?
The dirty politics, jilted woman’s revenge, and a very mysterious plot makes the novel a perfect movie material. Sheldon has weaved the story with strong main characters. It has colorful and interesting supporting characters. The encounter between the Bosnian boy and the journalist who took him under her care is touching yet unoriginal. This novel gives an insight of the politician’s life. It shows that like every commoner, they also have same amount of desire, need and fear. War stories and election campaigns makes the plot intricate. These are some of my favorite lines from the novel:
“Three men came across a female genie who promised to grant each one their wish. The first man said, “I wish I were twenty-five percent smarter”. The genie blinked, and the man said, “Hey, I feel smarter already”. The second man said, “I wish I were fifty percent smarter”. The genie blinked and the man exclaimed, “That’s wonderful! I think I know things now that I didn’t know before”. The third man said, “I’d like to be one hundred percent smarter”.
So the genie blinked and the man turned into a woman. “
“The people who are running the country have turned it into an old boy’s club. They care more about themselves than they do about the people. It’s not right and I’m going to try and correct that.”
“Money doesn’t care who owns it. A bum can win it in a lottery, a dunce can inherit it, or someone can get it by holding up a bank. But power that’s something different. To have power is to own the world.”
“If something can stop you, you might as well let it go.”
The novel is a page-turner. You’ll never get bored while reading it. ‘Best Laid Plans’ tells us that our passions if not bridled can either make or break us, hence we need to control ourselves. This novel is interesting and worth reading.