Inside-the-beltway guessing game: who inspired the characters in Nicolle Wallace's novel?
Once again, time to play "Who's Who" in the latest Washington roman a clef: "Eighteen Acres," Nicolle Wallace's savvy novel about heartbreak, drama and drudgery inside the White House complex.
The GOP insider (Wallace worked as communications director for George W. Bush and campaign adviser for John McCain and Sarah Palin) spins a tale about the first female president, a moderate Republican from California. "She may be the biggest fantasy in the book," Wallace told us Wednesday. "We may be further away from electing a moderate than we are from electing a woman."
The characters are, of course, "entirely fictional" but some are less fictional than others. President Charlotte Kramer is obviously inspired by Hillary Clinton: Wallace genuinely admires Clinton, especially how gracefully she weathered her husband's infidelity as first lady, and assorted indignities during her own presidential campaign. Lumpy political guru Ralph Giacamo sounds a whole lot like Karl Rove. The ambitious network correspondent sleeping with the president's husband is a mash-up of all those hot White House newsbabes. The first female White House chief of staff? A hint of Wallace herself, plus "every woman I know who wondered if she had no personal life because of her job, or if she had the job because she had no personal life."
And could Sarah Palin be the real-life inspiration for the all-too-colorful Tara Meyers? No, claims Wallace. But both are blunt, charismatic outsiders selected as a surprise choice for vice president. Both suffer wardrobe malfunctions: Palin's infamous campaign clothing fiasco; Meyers's sartorial misses: "a bright white suit that was made of some sort of stretchy material...the outlines of her undergarments were visible, and she wore an orange tank top and matching high heels."
True, Wallace and Palin clashed on the campaign trail, and Palin's book last year singled out Wallace for criticism. "She had really strong feelings about me," Wallace said. "On my part, I enjoy writing about fictional characters."
What's the saying? Ah, yes: Revenge is a dish best served cold. Wallace, now living in New York, is almost finished writing the sequel, scheduled to be released in the fall of 2011.
Read Also: "Review of ""Eighteen Acres," a political thriller by Nicolle Wallace"
The Reliable Source
| October 21, 2010; 1:04 AM ET
Save & Share: Previous: Hey, isn't that...?: The guys from "The Daily Show"; Nick Hornby and Ben Folds
Next: Quoted: Desiree Rogers on being fabulous
Posted by: rbsher | October 21, 2010 11:52 AM | Report abuse