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Sweeny, Owens & Boyle sits at the top of Wall Street law firms. With brains and looks, Maggie Mahoney became one of its partners and the “double trophy wife” of its managing attorney Bryce Chandler. His sudden death renders Maggie an outsider with the firm’s male establishment and creates a key administrative vacancy. Andy Anderson, firm chairman, chooses a surprising replacement: Jack Slattery, a reputed sexist. Driven by the dream of becoming United States Attorney General, the chairman elevates Slattery rather than risk his disclosure of Andy’s dirty secret.

The chairman’s ambition is also behind his desire to whitewash women’s treatment at the firm. Fearing what might be revealed at his confirmation hearings, he trumps up a committee to “investigate” their status and insists Maggie serve. She recognizes his hidden agenda to pay off and terminate those who’ve been wronged. Her demand for justice jeopardizes his goal.

Maggie’s battle with Andy evolves into a high stakes conflict destined to destroy one of them. Her tenaciousness also threatens her growing romantic relationship with Sam Forte, a handsome “go along to get along” former Olympian and fellow partner at the firm.

If ambition rules, can justice prevail?


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Kate McGuinness: Why I Wrote Terminal Ambition