I have always been fascinated by the concept of regret, which in many ways is a totally useless emotion, and yet we are often filled with it. For Cleo McDougal, the protagonist in Alison Winn Scotch’s fantastic and timely novel, regrets are something to be written down, acknowledged and then filed away, never to be considered again.
Cleo is an ambitious, intelligent and driven Senator from New York with her eyes on the Presidency. All seems to be going her way until an op-ed written by her former high-school bestie makes her question her past behaviour and finally face her long list of regrets. With the help of her campaign manager and good friend Gaby, Cleo must deal with the implications of the accusations leveled at her before they threaten both her career aspirations and her relationship with her son.
Cleo is a complex and nuanced character that I found incredibly relatable. There were certainly moments where I questioned her choices, but that’s kind of the point isn’t it? None of us can look back on our lives and say we did things perfectly. We can only hope to learn from our mistakes and grow from them.
CLEO MCDOUGAL REGRETS NOTHING is a compelling, insightful and entertaining read. While set in the world of politics, there is much more to the story than that. This is a novel about strength, friendship, love and power. I was completely drawn in to the story from the first page and was fully invested in Cleo’s journey all the way to the end.
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