Christopher Buckley turns out novels even faster than William F. did. In fact, since I read what I thought was his latest, Little Green Men, he has published five more. Perhaps I wasn't paying as much attention as I should have.
Generally Buckley's books revolve around the sordid side of life in Washington, DC. Usually they are funny. Mostly they hang together pretty well. This book, published in 2008, revolves around an unpopular President, (not that one) an ambitious Senator and a TV judge, appointed to the Supreme Court.
The TV judge is a wise cracking, colorful lady from Texas. She is highly entertaining until the President's handlers get a hold of her and manage to get her through the confirmation hearings. As a confirmation candidate and a Supreme Court justice she becomes a boor, not to mention a poor judge. I was hoping to hear her speak up and use some of those borrowed Ratherisms in the Senate and during oral arguments. No, she is as polite and as quiet as a church mouse.
The plot takes a bunch of twists and turns, there is (shocking!) sex, alcohol consumption and a bit of intrigue. The Senator gets his own TV show. The President wins reelection, mostly because he tells the country that he doesn't want it. Naturally the election goes all the way to the Supreme Court and our TV judge must cast the deciding vote. Everything comes out right in the end.
Buckley's use of language is superb. He fills the book with clever plays on words. Don't worry, ecxept for some Latin, thrown in (with bogus translations) for legal color, he does not go in for his dad's polysyllables.
I was a bit disappointed. I liked the idea of a Judge Judy stirring things up among the Supremes. Still, although no Thank You For Smoking, it was an entertaining quick read. Give it about a 73.