^ But in a political thriller, which is what Peaceable Kingdoms feels most like to me, you often know early on what the secret is, or at least have a good idea of it. The challenge is to defeat a powerful figure that seems to have an overwhelming advantage.
In this case, Ishan seems to hold all the cards. Both The Poisoned Chalice and Peaceable Kingdoms feature our heroes racing against time to bring down Ishan before he can hide or destroy all the evidence against him and win election to the presidency.
For me, that was the strength of Peaceable Kingdoms, although I was disappointed in the execution of it in the novel. And, like many others have commented, I also felt the conclusion felt rushed and didn't delve as deeply into some aspects of the situation as it might have.