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A Perfect Life

Cover of A Perfect Life

A Perfect Life

A Novel
Borrow Borrow Borrow
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

From Danielle Steel comes a heartwarming and inspirational novel about a mother and daughter who face challenges, cope with celebrity, and overcome tragedy while maintaining the outward appearance of . . .

A PERFECT LIFE

The epitome of intelligence, high-powered energy, and grace, Blaise McCarthy is an icon in the world of television news, asking the tough questions and taking on the emotionally charged issues of world affairs and politics with courage and insight. A single mother, she manages her well-ordered career meticulously, always prepared on the air or interviewing world-renowned figures and heads of state. To her audience, Blaise seems to have it all. But privately, and off the set, there is another untold story she has kept hidden for years.

Blaise's teenage daughter, Salima, was blinded by Type 1 diabetes in childhood, and her needs have kept her away in a year-round boarding school with full-time medical care and assistance ever since. When Salima's school closes after a tragedy, Salima returns to her mother's New York City apartment, and suddenly they face challenges they've never had to deal with before, and that Blaise feels ill-equipped to handle. A new caretaker provided by Salima's school creates as many problems as he solves. Handsome, accomplished, thirty-two-year-old Simon Ward, with strong opinions on every topic, questions how mother and daughter view themselves and each other. Simon opens new doors for both of them and refuses to accept Salima's physical limitations. He turns their world upside down, and the three become friends.

Then everything starts to unravel and Blaise can't keep her two worlds separate anymore. A beautiful young anchorwoman is hired at the network; it is no secret that she is being groomed to take Blaise's place. Her career as she has known it is threatened, and her previously well-ordered life feels totally out of control. For the first time, Blaise's life is not perfect, but real.

In this unforgettable tale, the incomparable Danielle Steel has written a novel that pulsates with emotion and honesty as three people face the truth about themselves. A Perfect Life is about what we do when facades fall away and we can no longer run from the truth. As old ideas fail, everything changes, and life is suddenly brand-new.

Praise for A Perfect Life

"A classic Steel story, with a mother and daughter keeping up appearances as they overcome tragedy and learn a thing or two about themselves."--Library Journal

"It's the lessons learned by the mother-daughter duo about love, loyalty and family that bring them closer together than ever before in Steel's latest heartwarming page-turner."--Closer Weekly

From the Hardcover edition.
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

From Danielle Steel comes a heartwarming and inspirational novel about a mother and daughter who face challenges, cope with celebrity, and overcome tragedy while maintaining the outward appearance of . . .

A PERFECT LIFE

The epitome of intelligence, high-powered energy, and grace, Blaise McCarthy is an icon in the world of television news, asking the tough questions and taking on the emotionally charged issues of world affairs and politics with courage and insight. A single mother, she manages her well-ordered career meticulously, always prepared on the air or interviewing world-renowned figures and heads of state. To her audience, Blaise seems to have it all. But privately, and off the set, there is another untold story she has kept hidden for years.

Blaise's teenage daughter, Salima, was blinded by Type 1 diabetes in childhood, and her needs have kept her away in a year-round boarding school with full-time medical care and assistance ever since. When Salima's school closes after a tragedy, Salima returns to her mother's New York City apartment, and suddenly they face challenges they've never had to deal with before, and that Blaise feels ill-equipped to handle. A new caretaker provided by Salima's school creates as many problems as he solves. Handsome, accomplished, thirty-two-year-old Simon Ward, with strong opinions on every topic, questions how mother and daughter view themselves and each other. Simon opens new doors for both of them and refuses to accept Salima's physical limitations. He turns their world upside down, and the three become friends.

Then everything starts to unravel and Blaise can't keep her two worlds separate anymore. A beautiful young anchorwoman is hired at the network; it is no secret that she is being groomed to take Blaise's place. Her career as she has known it is threatened, and her previously well-ordered life feels totally out of control. For the first time, Blaise's life is not perfect, but real.

In this unforgettable tale, the incomparable Danielle Steel has written a novel that pulsates with emotion and honesty as three people face the truth about themselves. A Perfect Life is about what we do when facades fall away and we can no longer run from the truth. As old ideas fail, everything changes, and life is suddenly brand-new.

Praise for A Perfect Life

"A classic Steel story, with a mother and daughter keeping up appearances as they overcome tragedy and learn a thing or two about themselves."--Library Journal

"It's the lessons learned by the mother-daughter duo about love, loyalty and family that bring them closer together than ever before in Steel's latest heartwarming page-turner."--Closer Weekly

From the Hardcover edition.
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Excerpts-
  • Chapter 1

    Crowds of students began congregating outside Royce Hall ­Auditorium at UCLA two hours before Congressman Patrick Olden was scheduled to speak, an hour before they opened the doors. He had been invited by an enterprising professor, who taught a class on citizenship and public service, open to juniors and seniors. But once the congressman accepted, he had sent out notices to all political science majors, and the auditorium was expected to be full. They were estimating that two thousand students would be there. And judging from the number of people waiting for the doors to open, there might even be more. He was a popular congressman, with a liberal voting record dedicated to the underdog and was known for championing minorities, including women, and sympathetic to the issues of youth and the elderly. And he had four kids of his own. He was married to his childhood sweetheart, and everybody loved him. The students were excited to hear him speak that day.

    The crowd was orderly once the doors were open, on a brilliantly sunny, warm October day. Olden was scheduled to begin addressing them at eleven, with time set aside for questions from the audience after his speech. He was scheduled to have lunch with the chancellor afterward and fly back to Washington that afternoon. Getting him there at all had been a major coup. It wasn't for a commencement address, or a law school graduation, it was just a class, and all of them were thrilled to have him there. Luckily it had dovetailed with his plans and a meeting with the governor the day before, and a dinner in his honor to receive an award. Pat Olden was a beloved figure with both young and old.

    One of his own kids, his oldest son, was at USC, and he had breakfast with him that morning. Patrick Olden appeared on the stage less than ten minutes late, while they waited backstage for the crowd to settle down. He stood at the podium with his warm smile, his eyes sweeping the crowd. You could hear a pin drop in the room when he began, and students without seats sat cross-­legged in the aisles, and stood at the back of the room. They paid rapt attention to everything he said about government today, and what their responsibilities would be if they chose a career in politics. He talked about his own college days and explained what he was trying to do on the various committees he was on, and went into considerable detail. He had already been in office for three years, had done considerable good with the bills he proposed, and this was not an election year for him. He sounded earnest and sincere, and the audience hung on his every word and greeted him with thunderous applause when he was through. He looked pleased. He was the perfect role model for them. The professor who had invited him opened the question and answer period, and a hundred hands shot into the air. The questions were pointed and intelligent and relevant to what he had said. They were twenty minutes into it when a boy in the third row stood up as soon as the congressman pointed at him, and looked him in the eye with a welcoming smile.

    "What's your position on gun control now?" the young man asked him, which was a topic he hadn't touched on that day and didn't want to. He was gentle but firm in his views in favor of gun control, but it was a sensitive issue that had had no place in his talk, advising them about careers in government and it was a subject he had chosen to avoid. The boy who asked the question had neatly combed blond hair, was clean-­shaven, and was wearing a blue shirt and an army surplus jacket. He looked orderly and well-groomed, but didn't smile back when Pat Olden smiled at him, and someone said later that the boy looked unusually...

About the Author-
  • Danielle Steel has been hailed as one of the world's most popular authors, with over 650 million copies of her novels sold. Her many international bestsellers include Country, Prodigal Son, Pegasus, A Perfect Life, Power Play, Winners, First Sight, Until the End of Time, The Sins of the Mother, and other highly acclaimed novels. She is also the author of His Bright Light, the story of her son Nick Traina's life and death; A Gift of Hope, a memoir of her work with the homeless; Pure Joy, about the dogs she and her family have loved; and the children's book Pretty Minnie in Paris.
Reviews-
  • Closer Weekly "A classic Steel story, with a mother and daughter keeping up appearances as they overcome tragedy and learn a thing or two about themselves."--Library Journal "It's the lessons learned by the mother-daughter duo about love, loyalty and family that bring them closer together than ever before in Steel's latest heartwarming page-turner."
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    Random House Publishing Group
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  • Copyright Protection (DRM) required by the Publisher may be applied to this title to limit or prohibit printing or copying. File sharing or redistribution is prohibited. Your rights to access this material expire at the end of the lending period. Please see Important Notice about Copyrighted Materials for terms applicable to this content.

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A Perfect Life
A Novel
Danielle Steel
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