Protect and Defend

Protect and Defend

A Novel

Book - 2000
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Random House, Inc.
A compelling new novel from Richard North Patterson- a major departure, and that confirms his place among the most important popular novelists at work today.

A newly elected president faces the unexpected chance to nominate a new chief justice of the Supreme Court. His first choice is a nationally respected Court of Appeals judge, a woman whose nomination faces two serious obstacles: a long-held personal secret; and the prospect that a volatile abortion case- a trial pitting a 15-year-old girl against her pro-life parents- will come before the court. And the Senate majority leader is determined to thwart the president's nomination for reasons that cross the boundary between the political and the personal.

As these stories intertwine, building in complexity and suspense, Patterson gives us the resounding clash of competing ambitions between the president and the majority leader; the equally momentous collision of science and culture in the courtroom; and, in an unprecedented novelistic depiction of the legal process from the perspective of the judge rather than the lawyers, a revelation of both how the judicial system works and how it intersects with politics, for better or for worse.

PROTECT AND DEFEND is a triumph- the definitive novel of politics and law at the dawn of the 21st century.

Baker & Taylor
When the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court drops dead following the inauguration, President Kerry Kilcannon selects as a replacement Judge Caroline Masters, a woman who hides a secret that could affect her ruling on a controversial case.

Blackwell North Amer
In Washington, the newly elected young President, Kerry Kilcannon, faces his first test: the sudden death of the Chief Justice of the United States has created a vacancy at the heart of a sharply divided Supreme Court. In San Francisco, an unknown fifteen-year-old girl, Mary Ann Tierney, presents a fateful request to the lawyer for an embattled women's clinic: she wants to sue for permission to have a late-term abortion over the opposition of her pro-life parents. In this confluence lie the seeds of a political and constitutional crisis that will shape the future of the Court, and of the powerful and powerless alike.
President Kilcannon resolves to nominate Caroline Master - a brilliant jurist shadowed by a personal secret - as the next Chief Justice. In the Senate, two men who hope to succeed Kilcannon hold the key to her nomination: Majority leader Macdonald Gage, and his bitter rival, Chad Palmer, a former military hero noted for his political independence. A hidden alliance between Kilcannon and Palmer is threatened when Mary Ann Tierney's inflammatory, nationally televised lawsuit thrusts the issue of abortion to the forefront of the Senate battle over the Masters nomination.

& Taylor

When the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court drops dead immediately following the inauguration, President Kerry Kilcannon finds the first order of business is to find a replacement, settling on Judge Caroline Masters, a woman who hides the career-damaging secret of an illegitimate child, a secret that could affect her ruling on a controversial case. 500,000 first printing.

Publisher: New York : Knopf, 2000
ISBN: 9780679450443
Characteristics: 549 p. ; 25 cm


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Mar 11, 2017

If you are following today's politics, Patterson's Protect and Defend is worth the read. Patterson wrote the book in 2000. There is a new president and an opening on the Supreme Court. Sound familiar? President Kilcannon wants a Supreme Court chief judge who is proven to be smart and sensitive to the issues of the day. He's found one in Caroline Masters. He has to battle the conservative far right, and politicians who aren't afraid of attacking the personal lives of anyone who gets in the way.

I found the book very informative. Patterson thoroughly details the arguments of pro-life and pro-choice advocates. They have not really changed in the last seventeen years. He also thoroughly discusses the problems that come with millions of dollars being donated to politicians from special interest groups.

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