In the high-stakes, high-pressure world of presidential politics, where predators carry microphones and one misstep can savage a lifetime of achievement, Kerry Kilcannon is the rarest player of all. Kilcannon believes he can make the system work. And he just may die trying.Driven by the violent nightmare of his childhood, fueled by forces that few could understand, and burdened by secrets no one must know, Kilcannon is running for President—and entering the crucial battleground of California with seven days to go. But for Kilcannon, there are hurdles that his courage, charisma, and compassion may not overcome: the network correspondent he still loves; the reporter bent on their exposure; the rival who’ll do anything to win; and the fanatic who believes that he must murder Kilcannon to protect the right to life. . . .