Campaign For Seduction
In Campaign For Seduction, journalist heroine Liza Wilson at one point describes Senator and presidential candidate Jonathan Davis as looking like Will Smith. Since it came from her thoughts and I’m a fan of that man’s face, I didn’t mind the reference. It also came late in the book when I’d already created my own image of Jonathan – and was able to dismiss the comment easily enough. What I had a harder time dismissing however, were his similarities to President Barack Obama.
Jonathan Davis is an African-American Senator running for the Presidency. When Campaign For Seduction opens, he’s in the midst of a grueling fight with a female Senator for his party’s nomination. The Senator is in his forties, charismatic, handsome and says ‘folks’ when talking to the media. I couldn’t get pictures of Barack Obama out of my head.
This often disrupted the flow of the story for me despite the fact that, apart from those superficial commonalities, the two men are different (Jonathan Davis is a widower who lost his wife to cancer and he’s from an extremely wealthy family). While I read Campaign For Seduction however, I asked myself on more than one occasion: “Would President Obama have said it like that?” Even though I knew Jonathan Davis was a fictional character only very loosely modelled on Barack Obama, my brain chose to believe otherwise. And when my brain wasn’t preoccupied asking What Would Obama Do?, it got busy asking What Would The President Do, and on quite a few occasions, Davis didn’t live up to my presidential ideals – even as he lived up to my romantic ones.
He said things like ”Who cared about a presidential campaign when there was a woman like that in the world?”. And okay, putting the love of your life as Number One and a presidential nomination as Number Two is pretty impressive, but at that point, he hadn’t even begun a relationship with Liza. I found him a bit too emotional, so I guess I like my Presidents stoic. And this was the problem. I was reading a romance story but politics kept encroaching. Would I vote for a President who was so cavalier with the success of his campaign as to put his personal life above the welfare of the country? I asked myself. Would I vote for a President who says “I’m the Man” even if he only says it in his head? Would I vote for a President if I knew his sex talk included things like “Don’t you let another man touch you, Liza”? Would I vote for a President if I knew about his sex talk at all?
I guess Christopher did her job too well in making me believe in Jonathan Davis, presidential candidate – because I spent a lot of time dissecting his qualities as a candidate rather than his qualities as a romantic hero.
However, when I did focus on the romance, I enjoyed it quite a bit. There’s a lot of drama, passion and heated looks in Campaign For Seduction. With Liza’s job offer on the line as a network news anchor, and his future as the President of the United States in the balance, their love is of the “star-crossed” variety. And though I prefer a stoic President, I like an expressive hero and Jonathan certainly is that. He’s head-over-heels in love with Liza and I always like to read about a man going out of his mind trying to impress and get his woman. Jonathan is alpha and aggressive in his pursuit but very much in touch with his emotions, more so than Liza, who has had to toughen up to succeed in a male-dominated environment. This was a nice role-flip. Liza as a strong female lead also stands very well on her own, and I would have liked to learn more about her career as a famous television journalist.
Her reluctance to enter into a relationship with Jonathan was understandable for a woman in her position and the hoops Jonathan had to jump through to make her reach her own “who cared about a million-dollar headline anchor role when there was a man like that in the world” decision made for many scenes which ran the gamut of sweet and sexy to dramatic and scorching.
I read Campaign For Seduction quickly and without a clear idea of how Christopher would bring them together in the end, which made for an interesting and romantic read – despite the fact that I would have enjoyed it even more if there had not been a politician, and the biggest one at that, there to distract me.