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Urban Blight and Struggle for Power Fuel Tale of Political Tug-of-War

Urban Blight and Struggle for Power Fuel Tale of Political Tug-of-War

(This press release may be reprinted in part or entirety by any print or broadcast media outlet, or used by any means of social media sharing)


Democratic President Bob Jordan and Republican House Speaker Mitchell Lawrence have known each other for years and share the philosophy that collaboration between the parties is the best way to govern. Their view, however, isn’t as popular as they’d hoped.

After 50 years of failed governmental attempts to improve failed inner-cities, Jordan and Lawrence choose a private development as the mechanism to institute change.

The project, dubbed A Hand Up, has an ambitious vision: transform the inner-cities that are beset with urban blight into safe, vital municipalities with great schools, thriving businesses and other options for recreation. In other words, give people a reason to want to be there.

Recreating a “new” city from the ashes of urban squalor, however, requires the cooperation of and support from government and the loss of power and control is more than current leaders are willing to abide.

Money and power are vested in the status quo. Politicians from both parties, big companies, unions, and the media thrive in this environment. Changes in approach threaten their power and they must do all they can to stop them. Out of this need for the status quo a plot to assassinate begins to grow.

While first and foremost a novel written to entertain, A Hand Up from Martin Laurent resonates with real-world problems that plague big-city projects and the political divide that prevents progress. Laurent’s narrative compellingly underscores the critical need for government entities to collaborate on even the most fundamental challenges. Perhaps a novel that supports neither (or both) sides of the political divide offers the best chance for building bridges.

Author Martin Laurent worked for General Motors for 32 years. With an educational background in mechanical engineering and business. Practical experience in facilities engineering, industrial relations and corporate strategic planning, and manufacturing management, Laurent’s expertise in change management lends authenticity to A Hand Up, in which he skillfully describes a common sense process for inner-city improvement.

Since his retirement, he consulted for a time before deciding to simply concentrate on life in Santa Fe, where he lives with his wife of over 50 years, Keren. The couple has travelled extensively.

Laurent has also served on the board of the Santa Fe Recovery Center since 2008. When he began, the center was a 23-bed residential treatment facility that provided a 30-day recovery program. Today, the center has expanded its capacity by five times and offers a wider array of services. The center has been recognized by the State of New Mexico for its excellence. Additional expansions are planned.

Laurent is also the author of The Third Bounce and Pray for Rain, a series that centers on these same two politicians and their wives.

For more information, please visit

A Hand Up
Publisher: Lithe Excel
Release Date: August 3, 2020
ISBN-13: 978-1-944293-51-2
Available from and

Trish Stevens
Maria Jenson
Ascot Media Group, Inc.
Post Office Box 2394
Friendswood, TX 77549
281.333.3507 Phone
800.854.2207 Fax


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