Monday, September 16, 2013

Capitol Hell Book Review

Recently, I mentioned that I signed up with IndieView to receive book for review. The next book I'm reviewing is a request from an author with IndieView. 

Capitol Hell
Jayne J. Jones & Alicia M. Long


When recent college graduate Allison Amundson, a small town girl from South Dakota, lands the highly sought after job of scheduler to the newly-elected and rising star of the United States Senate, Senator Anders McDermott III, she thinks she is on the fast track to success.

However, she quickly learns that crazy co-workers, a high maintenance boss, an over-the-top family and an unexpected Presidential bid make Capitol Hill seem even more dysfunctional than portrayed on TV. In fact, it is Capitol Hell.

The second Allison sets foot in the prestigious Senate Russell Building, things begin to go awry. Allison soon realizes her co-workers consist of a Chief of Staff who has little to no control over the antics in the office, a Press Secretary who is not only pompous, but who is constantly primping and preening, and worst of all the Senator himself, who cares more about his rise to fame than the people of Minnesota. 

As Allison struggles to juggle a new career, her blooming love interest in Cam (a quiet but loyal Legislative Assistant), and her ever-declining bank account, she is comforted only by her co-worker Janet, a fireplug who spends the majority of her time on-line dating, trying to land a Senator of her own. 

Just as Allison and Janet begin to figure out the ins and outs of Capitol Hill, their lives are turned upside down when Senator McDermott announces his bid for President of the United States. Soon, Allison and Janet find themselves at the center of one of the craziest campaigns in history, and hilarity ensues.

This off-beat, funny novel captures and shares what it is like to be a young staffer working on Capitol Hill. 

Title: Capitol Hell
Authors: Jayne J. Jones & Alicia M. Long
Publisher: Beaver's Pond Press (September 4, 2012)

Capitol Hell is certainly not what I expected. I knew it was going to be a story based on "politics" and I wasn't sure how I was going to like it. 

I gave it a chance because the blurb suggested that humor was involved. I must say, I had several laugh out loud moments while reading the book.

While it was centered in Capitol Hill, politics central, it certainly did not have that political feeling to it. Yes, it talked about politics but the story was so much more than that. 

It was about these two young girls, Allison being the MC, who venture into the real world of work and what's it's like to make a living out of meager wages while trying to maintain a positive outlook on life (and maintain their sanity).  

I found myself rooting for these characters to be winners. Through out the story they are faced with obstacles that would have definitely made me quit or go mental on someone. These obstacles and challenges they faced are so outrageous that I found myself wondering if they were real. I did email one of the authors and just had to ask. She confirmed that yes, these situations were indeed very real. Wow.. is all I can say. I give respect to the authors for having survived their encounters.

There was one character who I wanted to reach into the book and just shake some sense into him. Sadly, there are really people out there like him. 

I have to say, I did learn something from the book, ATD... Attention To Detail. I never realized how much planning and attention to detail goes into making sure a politicians schedule runs smoothly. Not that I need to know but it's good to have ATD so I can put that into use at home. 

Now, I realize that this story shows us just a small glimpse into life of staffers on Capitol Hill. I also realize that not all politicians and staffers are like the ones mentioned in the book. It sure did make for some entertaining reading though. I have to say that while I was reading the book, I thought about the political drama House of Cards. The book reminded me briefly of the show. I remember seeing an interview with Kevin Spacey where he was questioned about how he depicts politicians. He said something along the lines of not all politicians are like his character but there are some out there like that. Well, that's how I took the story to be like. The politician and staffers represented in the book are far and few in between (I hope!). I would like to think that those living on Capitol Hill and who represent our country are far more nicer than the one in the book. However, the one depicted in this story sure did make for a good, funny, laugh out loud read. 

Do I recommend this story? I do. I really enjoyed reading it. I couldn't put it down because I needed to read the antics these two staffers were going through and how they would survive and get out of their current situation. If you want a laugh out loud funny book that will leave you feeling good in the end, I recommend this story. The heroines truly come out shining in the end. 

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