This is the fourth book in a series about the daughter of the first woman president. I received the first one as a gift in middle school, and read the other two quite a while ago. It took me a while to track this fourth one down (and it was written quite a while after the first ones – the differences in the cultural references are funny).
In the third book, Meg was kidnapped by terrorists. When they left her alone, handcuffed in a cave, she smashed her hand to get free, and did manage to find her way back to civilization in time to be saved. (I swear, this is way less melodramatic than it summarizes as.) In this book, she’s back to DC, and everyone – her parents, her two brothers, the staffers they’re close to, and definitely Meg – is still very traumatized. This book is all them putting the pieces back together again, and it’s pretty well done.
What I liked is that everyone is pretty screwed up by this, and no one wants to talk about it. The things that are going on feel very real. Meg also still decides to go to her first year of college (second semester at least), at Williams College. This works on so many levels – first college experiences, having to work trauma recovery into that. Having to work in the fact that her mother is the first female present, and the very real fact that Meg’s starting realize she may want to study politics is also fun. So this book may sound like it could be pretty melodramatic, but it really works without taking itself too seriously. I hadn’t read the other books in the series recently, but I’m reminded why I like them (enough that I do still have them).