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Gloss    by Jennifer Oko order for
by Jennifer Oko
Order:  USA  Can
Mira, 2007 (2007)
* *   Reviewed by Joan Burton

Annabelle Kapner is a New York television producer for a morning news show. She works to boost the show's ratings by bringing real life human interest stories to the millions of people who watch the show while eating cereal and sipping their coffee.

She meets many interesting guests on the job, but one man in particular has attracted her attention. Mark Thurber is a speech writer for the White House and works closely with the vice president. After exchanging phone numbers they agree to meet for a drink while he is in New York. Annabelle soon realizes that Mark knows a lot of inside information that goes on in the White House. There is a connection between the two and they part knowing that they will see more of one another.

Annabelle does a human interest story about the beauty industry for Middle Eastern women, that gets aired on television. When she is out doing investigative work on the piece, she is involved in a raid and lands in jail. She is shocked to discover that all the papers and newscasts report she was helping to fund terrorists.

While in jail, with the help of friends outside (Mark Thurber being one of them) and inmates on the inside, Annabelle sets out to prove her theory that her arrest is a cover up for the real money contributors, the CIA and politicians. Now all the morning news shows are after her story. She wants to help the real victims in this beauty scandal, the teenage girls who are used as guinea pigs for beauty products. She learns that the CIA once used snake venom for a truth serum, and now that same ingredient is put into cosmetics. Will the world believe her findings and prosecute the real terrorists residing in the White House?

Jennifer Oko, the author of Gloss, is a producer for CBS news and gives us, in addition to a thriller, an inside look into the everyday world of morning news shows.

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