While the big election drama is safely behind us, curiosity about what’s going on in the world of politics certainly remains. If you are one of those who have always wanted to know what goes on behind closed doors on Capitol Hill, and how the United States Senate functions, you could get quite a few good laughs from Capitol Hell, a charming, witty, and often thought-provoking book by two young women who used to work for former Senator Norm Coleman (MN). Authors Jayne J. Jones and Alicia M. Long obviously have the insiders’ knowledge to make this book chillingly believable, yet also incredibly funny and approachable.
Picture yourself as a small-town girl from South Dakota suddenly living in Washington, D.C. and working for a rather dashing senator. What exactly might that entail? Well, let your imagination loose, but I’ll bet that no matter how hard you try, you won’t be able to come up with even a tiny fraction of the always hilariously described minutiae of working in that fast-paced and oftentimes seriously crazed environment. Pink high heels? Check. Crazy coworkers? Double check for sure. Blackberries on fire? Of course. Taking care of personal requests for the senator and his family? Naturally. Office intrigue? Yes. Backstabbing? It wouldn’t be politics without it.
There’s even a bit of romance, but unlike in so many chick-lit books the guy Allison likes is not her primary goal. She is trying to chase and catch a different dream, one of a real career, and for the most part remains steadily focused on it. I found that point of view quite refreshing.
Having never been in politics myself, I have no way of judging how accurate this book might be, but it has certainly convinced me that I have no desire ever to be part of life “inside the beltway.” I’ll gladly read a sequel to “Capitol Hill,” since I have a strong feeling that one might be coming, but that’s as much involvement in politics that I ever would wish for.
Capitol Hell by Jayne J. Jones and Alicia M. Long was a fun, enjoyable read and one that I would gladly recommend to anybody who wants to know what goes on behind the closed doors on Capitol Hill.