The Best Laid Plans

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The Best Laid Plans
First edition
Author Sidney Sheldon
Country United States
Language English
Genre suspense, thriller
Publisher William Morrow
Publication date
Sep 1997
Pages 384
ISBN 0-688-14911-1

The Best Laid Plans is a 1997 novel by Sidney Sheldon. Possible inspiration for the title comes from a paraphrasing of the Robert Burns poem "To a Mouse" into modern English.


When Oliver returns from Paris married to Jan, Leslie vows to take revenge against him. However she keeps her thoughts concealed. This makes Todd Davis, Jan's father, introduce her to one of his friends, who owns a newspaper. A brief introduction followed by marriage sees Leslie manage her husband's empire. With his falling health and subsequent death, Leslie becomes the sole owner of his properties. In spite of all the other businesses, Leslie takes an immense liking for the media empire, with which she intends to destroy Oliver. During this part, Dana Evans, who stars in Sheldon's other novel "Sky is Falling," appears as an inquisitive reporter who adopts a boy from war torn Sarajevo.

In the meantime, Oliver becomes the president, but during his first term there occur a series of deaths, all due to toxicity of Liquid Ecstasy, a dangerous aphrodisiac that Leslie connects to him. When she is convinced it is Oliver who is behind these murders, she goes on to publish the news of his arrest before it is confirmed. Dana Evans then unmasks the real culprit, while the president reveals a shocking secret.

The book ends with the proposal of a peace pact, brokered by President Russell, among the Arab nations, while Leslie is left wondering if she has gone a bit too far.


1) Oliver Russell (attorney-governor-President)

2) Leslie Stewart (once a fiancée of Oliver; an heir of many news agencies)

3) Jan (wife of Oliver Russell and daughter of Senator Todd Davis)

4) Senator Todd Davis (the one who finances Oliver Russell in his campaign)

5) Dana Evans (TV-news reporter for WTE)

6) Kemal (a twelve-year-orphan from Sarajevo whom Dana Evans adopts)


Preceded by
Morning, Noon and Night
Sidney Sheldon Novels
Succeeded by
Tell Me Your Dreams