National Security Advisor Jack Ryan is asked to serve his country one last time as VP before leaving government service forever. Jack accepts the temporary position only to see the President, both houses of Congress, and almost all of the upper level of government killed in a single crushing blow. President Ryan suddenly finds himself immersed in the political sea that he has studiously avoided throughout his career. He must comfort a nation who has just suffered a decapitating blow, and he must prove to the international community that he has the ability to lead his country through this crisis. If that were not enough, he also has the staggering responsibility of rebuilding the government - Congress, Cabinet, Joint Chiefs, and Supreme Court - while proving to himself that he really can perform his duties. A series of attacks are planned and executed against President Ryan, his family, and his country. Jack has only his wits, his personal integrity, and a few close friends to help him through this trial by fire.
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