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Capitol Hell

3.14  ·  Rating Details ·  146 Ratings  ·  44 Reviews
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 an
Paperback, 323 pages
Published September 4th 2012 by Beaver's Pond Press (first published August 30th 2012)
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Meg - A Bookish Affair
Okay, let me first say that this book was so much fun! Growing up in the Washington, D.C. area and being majorly afflicted with political fever, at some point in my life, I wondered what it would be like to work on the Hill. I went a totally opposite way after college so I really enjoyed living vicariously through Allison, the main character, in this book. All I can say now is that Allison definitely does not make the Hill as glamorous as I had dreamed that it would be.

Allison is a girl after my
Jul 15, 2013 Lindsay rated it really liked it
I am always a little dubious about starting a new “chick-lit” book; it isn't my first choice genre however, after reading psychological thrillers creepy enough to have me checking under my bed at night I often feel the need to lighten the mood and Capitol Hell sounded like just what I needed. Capitol Hell was laugh out loud funny as well as being interesting, engaging and insightful; it was clear that the personal experiences of the authors added credibility and authenticity to the story.

I reall
Nicole R
The short synopsis of this chick lit novel completely caught my attention: two women who used to work for a U.S. Senator combined forces to write a book about what you really do in your job as a Hill staffer.

Allison is fresh out of college, straight off the campaign trail, and has been offered a job as a scheduler for the newly-elected Senator McDermott. She jumps at the chance to move to Washington DC, get paid much less than she ever expected, work insanely long hours for little thanks, and co
Cindy Roesel
Oct 08, 2012 Cindy Roesel rated it really liked it
Thank God, Amen and Whoopee! The 2012 Elections are over! But for all you political junkies out there going through withdrawal, there’s a new VERY FUNNY novel just for you! It’s called CAPITOL HELL and it’s about a gal working for a fictitious Senator based on my real-life neighbor, Minnesota Republican, Norm Coleman. Co-authors, Jayne Jones and Alicia Long worked on Coleman’s 2002 Senate campaign and for several years after as DC staffers.

Those of you in the Land of Ten-Thousand Lakes will inst
Samantha Julmisse
Jul 08, 2013 Samantha Julmisse rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
What's does working in the senate, and then jumping into a presidential campaign train head on make for? I'll tell you what, a hilarious adventure sure to get the driest souls laughing so hard they'll have tears streaming down their face. In Capitol Hell we join the lovely Allison and several of her companions as we make our way not only through the life of being an underpaid senate work, but being risen up to becoming an underpaid presidential campaign worker! Not only do you get to see the fu ...more
Teressa Morris
Nov 23, 2012 Teressa Morris rated it really liked it
I loved reading about Washington D.C. from the point of view of a wide-eyed 22 year old. I have never been to D.C., but the writers' sassy descriptions helped me to understand the ins and outs of an everyday staffer's life a little better. Allison describes her second day on the job, and her walk to work:

"DC sidewalks aren't the sensible sidewalks found in South Dakota or Minnesota. They're uneven bricks grouted together with large, heel-grabbing gaps in between. After five blocks I'd already l
Kelly Woodward
Mar 16, 2013 Kelly Woodward rated it liked it
Really 2 1/2 stars, but I like to round up.

* varied cast of colorful characters
* moves at a good pace; is rarely slow or dull
* provides an interesting behind-the-scenes look at politics
* the staffers have decent values, for the most part

* needs extensive editing; lots of punctuation errors (including an extra period in the heading of every page of chapter eleven), poor word choice, etc.
* needs more plot structure; sometimes it just feels like a neverending list of anecdotes inste
Mar 06, 2013 Erin rated it really liked it
This book was a very funny portrayal of what a young woman, Allison Amundson from South Dakota, who landed a job on Capitol Hill deals with on a daily basis. The book was hard to put down and I finished it in a day. I enjoyed that no matter what Allison does to help Senator Anders McDermott III, something always goes wrong. She has to deal with the gossipy girls in the office and with their snide remarks. Just when you think that things can't get any worse, they do.

This book will have you laughi
Oct 05, 2012 Laura rated it really liked it
Probably actually 3 1/2 stars. This was a fun read. I liked the characters and the political storyline. And it's always a refreshing change of pace when the dominant relationship in a novel is a friendship rather than a romance. And it ended with me wanting to know what happens next. I would definitely read a sequel if one is written!

On the downside, the writing could use a little polishing. (Way too many exclamation points, especially in the beginning, and not every line of dialogue has to be a
Mar 07, 2013 Jan rated it really liked it
I like the book because the authors sent me a copy! Capitol Hell reminded me of my first job, working for Jimmy Carter's Gubernatorial Campaign, then in the Governor's Office. After serving as a go-fer, I was promoted to Prisoner Mail Answer-er. In those days, we typed a letter, and I signed Jimmy Carter's name to each one. It turned me into a Republican! However, Capitol Hell was a fun read for me. I'm into D.C. centric books right now. I no longer think like a 22 year old, so occasionally I wa ...more
Dec 03, 2012 Christine rated it it was amazing
This book was really good. The characters did frustrate me because they just took everything and never stood up for themselves. There were tons of Minnesota references that could be confusing to those not familiar with some of the Minnesota quirks.

I won this as a Good reads first and loved it. The authors are creative.
Dec 13, 2012 Jessica rated it it was amazing
This book provides a lighthearted look into the life of a scheduler working on Capitol Hill. It definitely reminded me of the time I spent working as an executive assistant - the good times, along with the more trying times, of my tenure.

This is a great laugh out loud type of book for women of all ages. Can't wait for Jayne and Alicia to publish the sequel to Capitol Hell!
Nov 29, 2012 Linda rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
A very funny and lighthearted story of life on capitol hill. The characters were smart, a little sassy, but yet a little on the naive side. I enjoyed and got a few chuckles from their escapades. A really enjoyable book. I recommend it highly! I received this book free as a Goodreads First Reads
Nov 08, 2012 Betsy rated it did not like it
Amateurishly written, poorly edited and trite. As a former Senate staffer, I picked this up with high hopes, but nearly tossed it across the room several times. (On one of those occasions, a character "inquisitively questioned" somebody. Repetitious much?) I'd call this a squandered opportunity.
Donna Brown
Jul 02, 2013 Donna Brown rated it liked it
Earlier this year I read The List and enjoyed it immensely (read my review of The List here) but it wasn’t the political drama I’d expected. Capitol Hell offered the politics, along with a dash of humour and a glimpse in the life of staffers on the campaign trail.

I mean, really, it makes you tired just thinking about that life…!

I really enjoyed this read for so many reasons. It was funny, insightful, interesting, but most of all, the personal experience of the authors clearly added a level of au
Fiona Ingram
May 02, 2013 Fiona Ingram rated it really liked it
Capitol Hell tells the story of Allison Amundson, a small town girl who lands the highly sought after job of scheduler to the newly-elected and rising star of the US Senate, Senator Anders McDermott III. If you thought politics is all fundraisers and colored balloons, think again. Don’t think Hollywood; think hell. Allison has grandiose dreams at the outset. But her meteoric rise from South Dakota to Pennsylvania Avenue doesn’t quite work out the way she envisaged it. Life on the Hill is far mor ...more
Jul 28, 2013 Lucy rated it liked it
Shelves: read-2013, for-review
The timing of this book being sent to me was pretty rather lucky for the authors. I don’t read chick-lit as a general rule, but I fancied something light, and had nothing on my to be read pile, so I decided I might as well try this one.

It’s been described as a political ‘The Devil Wears Prada‘, and I think that’s a pretty accurate description. In some ways it has more bite than The Devil Wears Prada because Allison actually wants to work in politics, it’s not just a means to an end for her. The
Aug 02, 2013 Amanda rated it it was amazing
Shelves: memoir, humor
Aside from School House Rocks! I know absolutely nothing about the actual political process in this country. At least, nothing after 1946. It was fascinating to read about how things actually work inside a senatorial office.

I was struck by the actual amount of work, organization, and ATD (attention to detail) that is required to keep a politician in office and out of his or her own way.

Although this is fiction, possibly to protect the guilty, I can see it all being factual in most ways.

Jun 07, 2014 Margie rated it really liked it
Shelves: bea-2014
If you have spent any time in Washington, DC, or Capitol Hill, or interested in political insights - you will really want to read this book. It will keep your attention from beginning to end. It has some humor - some so close to realistic it made me giggle.

The authors of this book obviously had insider information - it was interesting and informative as well as entertaining. I am sure Allison's office mates are similar to office mates everywhere - you may relate to some of them.

There were some
Jaimie Hope
Jul 31, 2013 Jaimie Hope rated it it was amazing
This book was hard for me to put down, which I unfortunately had to do several times during the reading of this book. However, every time I did all I could think about was what was going to happen next.

When I saw this book had a political backdrop I immediately expected the book to be boring and dry. As it turns out, nothing was further from the truth. While the book itself read like a novel I suspect there was at least some kernel of truth within it, which made it a real eye opener.

I wasn't exp
Sep 23, 2013 M rated it did not like it
I like chick lit books, but this was really, REALLY bad writing. Unbearable, in fact. Exclamation points everywhere (and I love exclamation points!) to the point of distraction, unvaried vocabulary, and yes, I get it, you're from the Midwest and everyone from there is also a god-send. I wanted a book about capitol hill drama, but it was not even an interesting story. I only read the first few chapters and skimmed the rest. Awful!!!
Jan 14, 2015 Sonja rated it did not like it
One of the worst books I have ever finished. As someone who has had these jobs (granted for a Senator but not a Presidential candidate) and is from both South Dakota and Minnesota it literally gave me anxiety to read it because it was so inaccurate and silly. I can definitively say that their experiences on the hill and campaigns (not to mention the Minnesota State Fair) were very different than mine.
Aug 03, 2013 Jennifer rated it really liked it
What a hilarious account of a young Senate staffer! I've known quite a few and can attest to the "realness" of this novel. I couldn't put it down. My only complaint is that the first 90% of the book is written in very great detail and the last little bit was rushed and left me craving more. Hopefully we'll be graced with future novels from this dynamic duo!
Mar 04, 2014 Judy rated it it was amazing
My Review: This book will keep you laughing and shaking your head at the antics behind the scenes of a U.S. Senator, his staff and his family. There are just too many things intertwined to even try to tell in a review. If you need a good laugh this a must read. On the sad side from some of the headlines we read today this isn't really a fiction book. I give this 5 stars.
Apr 25, 2013 Dave rated it it was amazing
One of my favorite books of all time! It was a treat to read and I love politics. But, this book gave me an insight into life on the Hell/Hill. A few Minnesota references made me wonder. I will pass this one around. I hope they come out with book 2. I will be first in line to get it. Great and fun read.
Benjamin Ellefson
Feb 10, 2016 Benjamin Ellefson rated it it was amazing
I loved this book. It was a hilarious read with a real, believable character fighting day to day in the underbelly of Washington. It provides a unique perspective on politics and has you laughing out loud chapter after chapter.
Catherine Cardno
Jul 01, 2013 Catherine Cardno rated it liked it
CAPITOL HELL is a reasonable beach read. Worth reading in a gulp, but weighed down with OMG!!!-type pacing and 20something dithering. SAMMY'S HILL is a better book, if you're looking for a girl-on-Capitol-Hill read.
Marge Jones
Apr 25, 2013 Marge Jones rated it it was amazing
Very funny!! I couldn't put the book down! I loved it and laughed out loud many times!!
Jul 18, 2014 Megan rated it liked it
Funny novel that's a bit jaded, much like DC. It's not going to win the Pulitzer, but it's a fun read if you have the time.
Nov 18, 2012 Jen rated it liked it
A fresh from college woman heads to Washington, D.C. to work in a MN senators office. This is a story of the craziness of the Senator, his family, and the rest of her coworkers.
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Alicia Long is originally from Hartford, South Dakota, a small town just outside of Sioux Falls. In 2003, she received her B.A. in Political Science from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. Upon graduation, she moved to Washington, D.C. to work on Capitol Hill. While working on Capitol Hill, she served for United States Senators Norm Coleman (MN), John Thune (SD) and George Allen (VA). She a ...more
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