The Candidate
Lis Wiehl with Sebastian Stuart
Thomas Nelson 2016
352 pages


The Candidate is the second thriller in the Erica Sparks Newsmaker series by Lis Wiehl and Sebastian Stuart. With the U.S. Presidential election looming, the timing of Wiehl and Stuart’s novel is noteworthy.The Candidate (A Newsmakers Novel Book 2) on KIndle

Erica Sparks is an enthusiastic and dedicated newscaster who has risen from the ranks to become a respected household name and easily recognized television personality.  Working in a highly competitive field, she finds her ratings waning as fresh faces test the market share.  She is happy to be assigned the new challenge of covering the Presidential election campaign at the cusp of the nominations.

Frontrunners for the Democrats are Mike Oritz and Fred Buchanan who couldn’t be more different.  Erica senses that something is off in the Oritz camp.  Although he is a respected war veteran, Erica finds the senator’s wooden demeanour and the way he takes subtle cues from his wealthy and glamourous wife a bit disconcerting.

As in The Newsmakers, a sudden and deadly commotion occurs while she is reporting a story, and the campaign is irreparably altered.  Erica takes it upon herself to investigate what or who is behind what she believes is the Oritz secret, and what has led up to the current political crisis.

Murder, mayhem and manipulation run rampant, putting Erica and her daughter Jenny in danger.  Erica, who is driven and motivated, puts herself in danger, knowing that if she doesn’t find the answers, the future of the United States is in serious jeopardy.

The Candidate is an exciting, suspenseful, and mufti-faceted novel.  Sparks is a well-developed, interesting character, whose complicated life is punctuated by very human ambitions and trials.  The plot contains more than a few surprises, both political and otherwise.  There is much to uncover, so it is hard not to immerse oneself in the story and keep reading.

As we learn more and more about the candidate, as well as Erica’s professional and private lives, this new novel is an excellent sequel to The Newsmakers,   Readers do not have to be familiar with Lis Wiehl and Sebastian Stuart’s previous book in order to understand and enjoy this one.  The Candidate is highly recommended.  This reader cannot wait to find out what exciting stories Erica Sparks will be involved with next.