“O. Murray Carr,” by Neil Rolde; Tilbury House Publishers; paperback, 336 pages

Longtime historian Neil Rolde, who served 16 years in the Maine Legislature and continues to be active in the Maine Democratic Party, has written his first novel, a political thriller.

“O. Murray Carr” begins with two gunshots. The Honorable Jonathan Jackson, an ex-state legislator and former gubernatorial assistant, tries to puzzle out and understand why Gov. Richard N. Ellery was assassinated.

Complicating matters for Jackson is the fact the killer is a boyhood friend, a would-be Hollywood actor hung up on the dream of American success.

The backdrop for the climactic action is a National Governors Conference in Los Angeles, a panorama of America’s governing elite where governors and staff members, the media and entertainers gathered for a final evening featuring an address by the president of the United States. Amid this action, a love story develops between Jackson and a TV news anchor.

Here, in the guise of a novel, is a view of our political system from within from municipalities to counties to a state and its ties to Washington, D.C.

“O. Murray Carr” dramatically mirrors the country’s politics and government, whether it’s walking Main Street to get votes or debating gun control issues in a crowded auditorium.

Besides serving in the Maine House of Representative, Rolde worked six years as assistant to Gov. Kenneth Curtis. In 1990, he was the Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate in Maine.

Rolde has published 11 books, including “Maine in the World: Stories of Some of Those from Here Who Went Away;” “Continental Liar from the State of Maine: James G. Blaine;” “Unsettled Past, Unsettled Future: The Story of Maine Indians;” and “The Interrupted Forest: A History of Maine’s Wildlands.” He received an award from the Maine Historical Society for “The Baxters of Maine.”

He has been married for 47 years to the former Carlotta Florsheim of Kew Gardens, N.Y. The couple live in York.


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.