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Best Laid Plans - Sidney Sheldon

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4 Reviews

Author: Sidney Sheldon / Genre: Fiction

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    4 Reviews
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      11.01.2013 02:08
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      Not one of his better books

      This book by Sidney Sheldon was published in 1997, in paperback in 1998.
      The book has 344 pages.
      The R.R.P of the book is £6.99 for the paperback copy.


      STORYLINE
      The story starts with two main characters, an advertising executive Leslie Stewart who meets the other main character Oliver Russell when he looks for her help in his campaign to run for governor.
      The day Leslie meets Russell she later goes home and writes in her diary "today I met the man I am going to marry".
      The couple become close very quickly and it looks like she was right when he proposes, that is until a couple of weeks before the wedding when he goes on a business trip and returns married to his ex, Jan Davis.
      Leslie acts very cool about it and sends her best wishes to the newlyweds, the book then hints that she will get her revenge.
      Leslie's character seems to go quiet in the book for a while after this, she is mentioned throughout the book, mainly about her career and not rally as a main character for a while, it is not until much further on that the reader starts to get an idea what she is up to.
      After the wedding the book focuses on Oliver, his wife and his new father in law Todd who is a senator.
      Todd is pushy and wants to make sure his son in law makes it as governor and into the Whitehouse as soon as possible.

      What seems to be out of nowhere, a TV reporter Dana is brought into the story. She goes out to Sarajevo to report on the war there and this seems like a totally different book. For a while everything that has happened in the book seems forgotten about and the story is about Dana and new characters she works with or meets on the streets of Sarajevo. It then goes back to the original story and characters and I found myself wondering what Dana had to do with any of the original story.
      She does have a part to play later on but to me it felt as if what I was reading was two book ideas and they decided to put them into one book.
      There are a few mysterious deaths along the way and a couple of romances. I got a bit impatient with the book at times and was thinking to myself "what has this got to do with anything?". Eventually in the last couple of chapters things start fitting into place....in a fashion. There is a bit of a twist at the end but I felt it was ruined by being rushed. Things are only just starting to make some bit of sense and the book is finished.

      Overal
      Sidney Sheldon wrote many plays, TV series' and books in his lifetime. I have read a few of his books before this one, most being good, the others being a bit strange....which is what I thought of this one!
      I read the book quite quickly, which means it can't be one of the worst I've read or I wouldn't have made it halfway. I think I read it quickly because I wanted to see how all of the characters' stories end and how they link the characters together at the end.
      Both the start and end of the book disappointed and seemed rushed. A few of the characters in the book didn't seem to add a lot to the story and I wasn't keen on the way it went from one character to anothers lives with little seeming to link them. Some events would occur in the story and an explanation as to what happened would only follow chapters later. When Oliver married his ex there was no explanation why until much further along in the book.
      I wouldn't read the book again, saying that, there are very few books I would read twice. I don't think it is one of Sheldon's better books although it wasn't terrible and I was given the book so can't complain. I don't think I would recommend anyone to go out any buy it but perhaps to take it out of the library or pick it up if you see it very cheap at a charity shop or sale and see what you think of it for yourself.

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      29.12.2002 22:52
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      The Best Laid Plans is a 358-page long novel (this refers to the hardback edition) that races along at a breathless, suspense-filled pace that will cause most people to not be able to put it down. I know I wasn?t able to put it down until far into the night when I first read it. A brief few words on Sydney Sheldon himself: he is known for his suspense-filled and awesomely-written novels. His novels are very easy to read and always are full of action, delicious details, strong, beautiful and sometimes flawed heroines, and often have plots that are based on someone getting revenge in a truly genius way. Sheldon?s strength is character development - his characters are so alive that they jump off of the page at you. The Best Laid Plans is no different. Our main heroine, Leslie Stewart, is a beautiful and extremely intelligent public relations and advertising executive. Proof of her intelligence lies in the fact that she started out at her job as a secretary, and after offering her ideas to her higher-ups at meetings, she managed to prove her worth and move her way up first to a junior copywriter, and later to an executive. The Best Laid Plans starts when Leslie meets her latest soon-to-be client, Oliver Russell. They fall in love, but Oliver ends up jilting her for another woman. Leslie is devastated and firmly decides to plot revenge. Basically, she makes it her mission in life to get revenge on Oliver, who humiliated her in front of her coworkers, family and friends. So we watch as Leslie works her way up in the world of Advertising. She starts by marrying the owner of a newspaper, The Phoenix Star, which was losing money at an alarming rate. After the honey moon, Leslie slithers her way into the paper and manages to turn it around, gaining readers and turning it into a money-making machine once more. Her husband Harry Chambers dies, leaving his estate to Leslie. After that, Leslie doesn?t waste any time - she buys the Sun Times in Oregon
      , and manages to get a hold of several TV stations and newspapers. We learn later in the novel why she does this? in order to be able to write damaging stories about Oliver Russell, who is happy in his new life married to Jan, the Senator?s daughter. The Best Laid Plans becomes very exciting as you make your way through the story. We watch as Leslie works her way up to become very important in the Advertising business; how Oliver begins to suspect what she is doing and how he reacts to it; we also meet another character, Dana Evans, who manages to work her way up from a lowly assistant at a TV Station to a Foreign Correspondent in Sarajevo, which is a very exciting subplot to the story. She becomes a key character in the novel as the story begins to build up to an exciting and suspenseful crescendo. Add to the story the fact that women who have some kind of contact with Oliver Russell begin to turn up dead from the liquid drug Ecstasy, and he looks to be guilty! I won?t of course destroy the suspense or story for you by revealing what happens, but all I can say is that as The Best Laid Plans moves along at a breakneck speed the reader will be riveted and not be able to put the book down. The writing is superbly readable, the dialogue believable, and the story breathtaking. Don?t start reading this one at night or you will be up until the wee hours of the morning finishing it! My favorite things about The Best Laid Plans are how the suspense builds up to a shattering climax. I also loved how the characters, in spite of their many flaws are very likable and realistic. Also, there are many themes to The Best Laid Plans. Sydney Sheldon explores revenge, jealousy and irony very deeply and also touches on the ?just when you think you know this person, you find out?? and ?don?t judge a book by its cover? topics as well. Overall this book is a very satisfying read that makes you think as well. The only thing about the book that I foun
      d a little undesirable was that the plot can sometimes be a little unbelievable. Things have a way of happening that are sometimes too good to be true or too convenient to be completely realistic. However, this downside of The Best Laid Plans isn?t enough to make me not like it or recommend it to you. I?m one who usually hates when stories aren?t believable or realistic enough, but this book is so exciting and rich in detail that it didn?t bother me much. The bottom line? If you already haven?t and are a fan of Sheldon?s, make sure to read The Best Laid Plans. Die hard Sheldon fans are sure to enjoy this one. Others out there who have never read his books should also grab a copy (which is published in hardback and paperback formats) - you can probably find it at many discount book stores for a great price.

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      • More +
        14.03.2001 21:57

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        I absolutely love crime/thriller books by Sidney Sheldon. However, this book was an exception! I thought that the characters were quite weak compared to those in his other books such as 'Master of the Game', 'Morning, Noon and Night', etc and the plot was too simple. It started out quite alright and I was glued until I reached the middle where it seemed to drag on aimlessly. Somehow, after getting through that middle, Mr Sheldon started creating subplots and the lead characters seemed to be pushed aside all too suddenly. This is where it got interesting enough for me to finish reading the book. I have to admit though, that the story had a rather interesting twist at the end which changed my initial doubts about this book. You also wouldn't have guessed that the lead characters would be side-tracked at the end! It's basically a story about an ambitious woman, Leslie, who was supposed to get married to Oliver, a guy who is pursuing a career in politics. But she finds out in the papers that he had married his past lover in the midst of their engagement. As you might have already guessed, Leslie now decides to plot a scheme to make him wish he had never been born. And that's where the roller coaster ride begins. All in all, criticisms aside, it was an enjoyable read - simple reading with minimal thinking involved! I would advise you to buy the book at County Bookshop, where a hardback copy costs only £2.99. I bought mine in paperback from Amazon.co.uk for £5.59.

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        25.09.2000 19:03

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        In true Sidney Sheldon style, the book keeps you hooked from the first chapter, to the last page. In the modern word of politics remember to never cross a woman. A woman scorned becomes your worst enemy, The lead character is a ambitious man aiming high in his political career, and with the aid of his wife's father, and his money, finds the path to the whitehouse easier than most. However in the midst of his career path is one factor he is unaware of, an ex love, dumped the week before their wedding, she has her own goals to destroy his career and make him pay for the humiliation she suffered at his hands. One of Sheldon's better novels that will have to wanting to read more of his work.

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