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Political Thriller  Review

Rainy Days and Sundays
by Brewster Milton Robertson
Harbor House, 2000
ISBN: 1-891799-12-6

This political thriller set in the near future of 2002, grabs you in the opening chapter as a Christian Coalition style President turns Roe vs. Wade around.  Abortions are once again illegal, and the backroom butchers open shop. 

Brewster Milton Robertson in his debut novel has created a charming hero in Buchanan Forbes.  As he loses his job and his wife takes the kids home to the grandparents, this pharmaceutical sales representative going through a mid-life crisis becomes “God’s Gift to Women” to such a point that the reader wonders if Viagra is among his collection of samples.  At age thirty-five, Buchanan attracts sexually aggressive females from age nineteen to forty-three.  Even the IRS, who is bugging his every move as they wait for him to sale samples on the black market, are in awe of his growing stable of female admirers. 

The truth is, Buchanan Forbes is a nice family man who went into pharmaceutical sales to provide for his wife and four sons, though he is a talented writer and artist.  Alma, his wife makes the Wicked Witch of the West look like Glenda.  His best friend and renown North Carolina lawyer Cammie Brawley decides it’s open season when Alma moves with the kids to Virginia, and sets a series of traps in order to bed Buchanan.  Talented writer and student Penny Wagner trapped in an unhappy engagement, clings to Buchanan after a wild weekend of passion.  Decorator Maggie O’Brien is passionate about everything, and she is in many ways Buchanan’s match.     

The various relationships take on a roller coaster ride of emotions, as Buchanan becomes a target in illegal abortions.  The story becomes an interesting study of character and loyalty as Buchanan must prove his innocence and provide information about the doctor who used his car the night a body was disposed of in a swamp.   

As much as Rainy Days and Sundays is a political thriller, it is also a medical thriller.  Robertson draws on his knowledge of pharmaceutical sales from personal experience.  The insider’s view of how samples are abused, the power play from the FDA to the IRS, and the details of how an IUD can be used to abort a fetus, provide the story with an intensity that runs throughout the novel.   

The country doctor and county sheriff provide moments of humor.  The sheriff is caught in the atmosphere of romance.  He loses his free-loving nurse as he dates a nice woman his matchmaking sister picked out.  Also, he temporarily gives up his tobacco-chewing habit for the new lady.     

The search for a doctor wearing shirts with the monogram “EL” on the cuff, leads the reader and Buchanan in one direction much of the novel.  However, a curve at the end points the guilty finger at another, making this an enjoyable read for mystery fans.  The title refers to the moments of shared pleasure, which can also be used to describe this well-crafted thriller.  

Joyce Dixon
Southern Scribe Reviews

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