“The Future is Female” used to be Mayor Ida Harrington’s favorite slogan. Now it’s “Eve Was Framed.”
Powerful women and old political scandals make an addictive combination in this rollicking tale of money and betrayal set in one of the South’s most unpredictable cities.
Ida Harrington is the charismatic mayor of a faded tourist trap and the daughter of its most infamous political boss, Frank Harrington, a self-made kingpin who never let a funding shortage or a few bodies hold him up.
Ida played it safe her first term — jobs, sidewalks, tough on crime — but with an easy reelection on the horizon she has more controversial game in her sights: kneecapping the lobbyists and expanding the non-discrimination law to include LGBTQ citizens. Her plans are rolling out like a red carpet to the future when her loudest critic turns up dead steps away from a big-budget makeover of the city’s long-neglected museum.
The murder investigation plays into the hands of Ida’s opponent, ambitious inheritor Trip Clendon, who’s aided by a ruthless blogger obsessed with the Harringtons. Ida learned to cut deals and neutralize enemies at the feet of the master, and she and her cutthroat chief of staff are managing to stay one step ahead of her public enemies — until they discover that the city’s reputation was built on a multi-million-dollar fraud, and the evidence, yet again, points to her father’s time in office.
And Frank? Well, he’s still willing to bury a problem, even if it’s his own kid.
Public Record is an 82,000-word contemporary thriller for fans of Laura Lippman and Alex Segura.