The Senator’s Children
“It’s hard to look so deeply into other people’s lives that you really understand them, except perhaps through fiction, and that is what Montemarano has done here, with deftness and subtlety.” —The New York Times
In a country that loves second chances, are some transgressions simply unforgivable?
Sisters Betsy and Avery have never met, but they have both spent their lives under the scrutiny of prying cameras and tabloid journalists. Their father, David Christie, was a charismatic senator and promising presidential candidate until infidelity destroyed his campaign and his family’s life. In the aftermath, Betsy grieves her broken family, while Avery struggles with growing up estranged from her infamous father yet still exposed by the national spotlight. Years later, as David’s health declines, Betsy and Avery are forced to face their complicated feelings about him—and about each other. With delicacy and empathy, Nicholas Montemarano brings these sisters together in a parallel of grief and grace.The Senator’s Children brilliantly distills the American family under pressure.
This engrossing, brilliantly structured novel takes a familiar situation—the implosion of a presidential candidate’s career—and creates a thing of heartbreaking beauty out of it. In spare and evocative prose, Montemarano brings something to his family tragedy that’s become a rarity in Washington—empathy—and turns what could have been a simple story of heroes and villains, of power and disgrace, into a deeply moving story of human connection. By asking whether forgiveness can conquer blame, and whether we might even be able to treat strangers like family, The Senator’s Children feels like exactly the kind of novel we need in 2017.”
—Eric Puchner, author of LAST DAY ON EARTH
When it comes to melodrama, there are three kinds of writers: those who run from it, those who run to it, and those who transform it. Nicholas Montemarano is that last, most rare, most remarkable sort of alchemist, and his new novel, The Senator’s Children, is a most rare, most remarkable book. You might begin this novel thinking you recognize the politician and his family therein, but by the end they become something much more magnificent, more mysterious, more empathizable, than the real-life figures they may or may not be based on. Another one-of-a-kind book by one of our most talented fiction writers.
—Brock Clarke, author of THE HAPPIEST PEOPLE IN THE WORLD
The Senator’s Children is such an effortlessly written book that you can slip into it without noticing the deep and painful and complex alternate reality it represents. Nicholas Montemarano holds up a mirror to our times in this profound meditation on the human cost of politics—a novel that bears reading and rereading.
—Jess Row, author of YOUR FACE IN MINE
What are the personal costs to a politician and the people he loves? In The Senator’s Children, Nicholas Montemarano weaves a fascinating and poignant tale about the Christie family and the effects of scandal, loyalty, love, and loss on both public and private lives.
—Jessica Treadway, author of HOW WILL I KNOW YOU?