Blog

Madam President

February 18th, 2015 | 0 Comments

Hi folks! I am back with my third novel Madam President in April.  I’m so excited to share this story with readers.  Madam President tells the story of Charlotte, the country’s 45th president, Dale, the White House press secretary, and Melanie, the Secretary of Defense.  We join them for just one day in their extraordinary lives; but it is the most harrowing day of their careers.  The novel opens with an Oval Office address to the nation from President Kramer.  She is speaking to the American people at an hour of grave calamity–the nation has been attacked in a series of horrific terrorist attacks on “soft targets” in five American cities.  Madam President follows the three women through a single day on the White House complex as they juggle their own despair and fear with their solemn responsibilities to the nation.

 

I am exited to share Madam President with you and will be revealing more details as the publication date nears.

 

Thanks to my readers!

Of Blogs and Books

December 10th, 2013 | 0 Comments

December is the time of the year when I feel most frustrated by the fact that I’m not enjoying myself enough. This is the season of winter wonderlands, Christmas fantasies and recreating the magic of childhood holidays. I should be gazing up at the tree in front of Rockefeller Center instead of rushing around looking for cute stamps for my holiday cards. I should be serving meals to the homeless not wondering if the three hundred dollar bikini I bought my sister is “enough.” I should be savoring quality time with my beautiful two year old instead of strapping him into a jogging stroller and handing him an iPad so I can go power shopping. I should be walking around with the spirit of Christmas coursing through my veins; not the sickening mixture of caffeine and sugar from too many eggnog lattes.

The one thing that has provided an escape this season is the abundance of extraordinary novels and non-fiction books on my nightstand and loaded in my iPad. As a seasonal “splurge” I decided that I would buy the hardcover and e-book versions of the books that I love the most. Now, I am never far away from the lyrical and captivating chapters of Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch, or Charles Krauthammer’s Things that Matter. I’ve re-read several of his columns so many times that I’m starting to know them by heart. (I’m partial to his pieces on dogs and the post-September Eleventh world.)

Other books that I felt particularly blessed to have read this year include Five Days at Memorial by Sheri Fink; Days of Fire by Peter Baker, Thank you for Your Service by David Finkel, House in the Sky by Amanda Lindhout, This Town by Mark Leibovich and The Outpost: An Untold Story of American Valor, by Jake Tapper (this one was published in November 2012 but with a toddler in my house, it took me a long time to read it).

A quick word on all of the above because each one is a treasure trove of the finest reporting and most gifted writing I’ve ever seen combined on a page. These books prove my theory that the best books you ever read are written by some of the best people you ever get to meet.

Five Days at Memorial by Sheri Fink is a masterpiece. She combines a novelist’s knack for “character development,” with an investigative journalist’s gift for precision. Add to that Fink’s storytelling expertise and what you have is a book that you will not soon forget.

I’ve said so much about Days of Fire by my friend Peter Baker, but I’ll say it again because this one is personal. On each page, there are stories that I remember well from my days in the Bush White House; stories that I’m surprised Peter discovered, and revelations that I read about for the first time.

This Town by Mark Leibovich is simply the best book ever written about this moment in time in D.C. Like Ward Just’s Echo House, this book is mandatory reading for anyone with any interest in the comical tragedy that is today’s Washington, D.C. This was a “single sitting” read for me. I could not put it down, and I was sad when I was done. I’m hopeful that someone will make a movie so I can see who will play Kurt Bardella.

Thank you for your Service is another book that has haunted me since I read the first page. This one is in a category that I call “the instant classic.” Read it. You will be glad that you did.

House in the Sky is in the same category. It’s devastating and inspirational all at once, and you have to read it to understand the human spirit and just how much it can endure. Amanda Lindout deserves all of the praise she has earned, not just for the perfection of this book, but for her courage and grace.

Jake Tapper’s The Outpost is the book that future generations will read to understand the war in Afghanistan and the men and women who fought it. You get the impression as the reader that the process of reporting, writing and sharing The Outpost changed its author. That feeling makes you want to delve as deep as Jake has done to understand how things were put in motion that in hindsight seem so very clear.

Double Down by Mark Halperin and John Heilemann, Obsessed by Mika Brezinski, and The Right Path by Joe Scarborough are three more treasures on my nightstand. Give Double Down to the political junkies in your life. Slip Obsessed into the stocking of every girlfriend, sister, mother or daughter who has ever struggled with body image or food (by my count, that’s just about everyone I know.) And gift-wrap The Right Path for all of the despondent Republicans in your life.

This has been a magical year for books—and I’ve only scratched the surface of what’s out there, but these are ones worth stuffing into your carry-on or loading onto your Kindle or iPad before you head into the elements for shopping, traveling or family gathering. Merry Reading!

Welcome Back!

September 24th, 2013 | 0 Comments

Welcome back! I’m hard at work on my third novel about President Charlotte Kramer–America’s first female president, and our country’s 44th President. With every new scandal then engulfs our political-media landscape I wonder how long until my fictional world — a world in which the country is run by women–becomes reality. The Eighteen Acres series was inspired by what I witnessed in 2008 when two women, Sarah Palin and Hillary Clinton, each broke boundaries in their turns on the national stage. But as I write the third Charlotte Kramer novel, I’m more inspired than ever to turn this fictional world into a reality.

In many ways, 2012 put us back at square one. There were no female candidates in contention for the republican presidential nomination or under serious consideration for vice president. And the democratic president who promised hope and change, has filled the most powerful posts his second term cabinet with elderly gentlemen from the U.S. Senate.

People ask me what I think it will take to finally see a woman hold the highest office in the land. It’s quite simple. We must first connect the dots. Women are never the ones snapping photos of their body parts, paying for sex or groping their male colleagues. The reason is obvious to most women. We don’t get involved in politics to dominate our competitors. Don’t get me wrong–there are many men with pure motives and sterling records of accomplishment. But there are no women politicians who force us to explain what sexting is to our younger sisters or daughters (or our parents).

And while voting for a candidate has so much more to do with where she stands on the issues we care about than whether she wears a dress or a tie, we must decide that it matters more than not at all that she brings to the table life experiences that are unique to women.

So to Hillary Clinton, Liz Cheney, Christine Quinn, Susana Martinez, Meg Whitman, Sheryl Sandberg, Carly Fiorina and every other woman out there who has ever felt more like a professional juggler than a politician, you are our best hope Run sister, run.

Books by Nicolle Wallace