In many ways, the 2016 election has been just like a bestselling novel: larger-than-life characters, unbelievable scenarios, heroes, villains, unexpected twists, and drama that’s impossible to look away from. But at Off the Shelf, we know that real-life politics can sometimes get a bit tiresome. So, we’ve created this list of historical, humorous, and thrilling fiction to give you a political fix when the news becomes just a little too much.
Vince Flynn is one of the most iconic thriller writers of our time, and this explosive adventure cements his place in the canon. A horrific explosion occurs in Washington a month before the election, and CIA agent Mitch Rapp is in charge of tracking down the culprit. As Rapp begins to uncover details of the attack, he realizes that the motive may have been more personal than political.
ECHO HOUSE follows three generations of the Behls family, Washington power brokers who rise, fall, and try to maintain their influence as the world changes around them. This saga spans almost a century of American politics as the Behls run for office, fall out of favor, and cross paths with those who will make history.
A PRIMARY COLORS for the modern age, this political page-turner focuses on Cal Regan, the president’s campaign manager, who throws himself at the media, the opposition, and the White House press corps as the 2012 election is kicked into high gear. The author spent years observing politics and delivers revealing portraits of many prominent contemporary figures.
The final book in Vidal’s Narratives of Empire collection can be read independently of the others, but it is a stunning culmination of the six-volume series if you have the time to read from the beginning. Stretching from the New Deal to the McCarthy era, the story follows three young men in the media, Senate, and House of Representatives as they navigate the ambition and corruption of our nation’s capital.
A triumph of political historical fiction, Thomas Mallon’s novel is a retelling of the 1948 presidential election, where Harry Truman upset Thomas E. Dewey. As the story switches focus between two candidates vying for the public’s affections and two suitors vying for the heart of a young girl in Dewey’s home state of Michigan, it’s a perfectly woven tapestry about our country on the micro and macro levels.