Synopses & Reviews
"Despite an overblown title and occasional moments of melodrama ('Comets have a bad reputation. They are known for letting their hair down and growing a brilliant train as they head for earth'), this is a serviceable dual biography of John Quincy and Louisa Adams during the former's service as United States envoy to Russia (1809 1814) and throughout his negotiations with Britain that produced the Treaty of Ghent and ended the War of 1812. Media commentator and presidential historian Cook (Stories of Faith and Courage from the Revolutionary War) draws heavily from diaries and voluminous correspondences to render the couple's daily and inner struggles, and she sets these against a backdrop of Napoleon's maneuvering for Moscow and detailed descriptions of the Byzantine ceremony, intrigue, and diplomacy of Czar Alexander's court. Old-school historians might recoil at Cook's embellishments (e.g., invented dialogue and insight into everyone's thoughts), but fans of historical fiction will appreciate her approach and come away with a satisfying picture of the man who would become our sixth president and his resilient wife. Agent: Jonathan Clements, Wheelhouse Literary Group. (May)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.