AIR FORCE ONE IS HAUNTED by Robert Serling

AIR FORCE ONE IS HAUNTED

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Pres. Jeremy Haines. the vanishing/reappearing hero of The President's Plane Is Missing (1967), is back again--still in the White House, now under fire for his too-soft posture against the Soviets. That's not Haines' big problem, however. No, his big problem is that he's been getting longwinded visits from--we kid you not--the ghost of Franklin Delano Roosevelt; FDR appears whenever Haines is alone in Air Force One, you see, offering banal pep-talks, cutesy policy advice, and tedious anecdotes about the good old days. (""So my first piece of advice, Mr. President, is to start being strong again."") Haines, of course, fears that he's gone bonkers. So he's soon Telling All--and falling in widower's love with--psychiatrist Jessica Sarazin, who believes (at first, anyway) that Haines is hallucinating. Nonetheless, FDR's chatter helps Haines to fashion a neo-New Deal for the nation--a national lottery to finance Medicare, employment programs, etc.--despite the anti-Haines doings of a nasty General and some nasty Congressmen. But: will Haines go along with FDR's hawkish advice about a nuclear first-strike against the USSR? (The US is now nuclear-attack-proof thanks to star-wars satellites.) Instead, he'll reach a super-peace with Russia (Germany is reunited), to the applause of the ghost: ""l was testing you. Judging whether you could act on your own, instead of relying on an apparition for counsel and advice. . . I had to make sure before I left you. For good, I regret to say."" (And perhaps FDR was really just a self-healing hallucination all along.) A definite early-season contender for Most Inane Novel of 1985--only for those who became emotionally involved with My Mother the Car or Mr. Ed.

Pub Date: Feb. 1st, 1984
Publisher: St. Martin's