SAMMY’S HILL by Kristin Gore


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A mildly hypochondriac but sweet young senatorial aide takes everything mean old Washington can throw at her while giving her all to a possible national program to lower prescription costs for senior citizens.

Vice-presidential daughter and first-time novelist Gore can be presumed to know the lay of the land. Here, the eponymous Sammy (née Samantha) Joyce, daffy in a sorority-cutup sort of way, has cast her lot with virtuous Ohio junior Senator Robert Gary, slightly grizzled, right (that is to say, left)-thinking father of two-year-old twins. Domestic policy advisor Sammy shares a flat with a succession of Japanese fighting fish and puts in 80-hour weeks trying to wrest this great nation’s prescription drug policy from the grip of the pharmaceutical companies and put it in the compassionate hands of her straight-arrow boss. She’s busy as a bee, but finds enough time in between vital hearings and the preparation of position papers to carry on a passionate fling with devilishly handsome Aaron Driver, principal speechwriter for evilly cynical New Jersey senator and presidential hopeful John Bramer. Sammy and Aaron have become bedfellows thanks to an alliance on health matters between their bosses, which sends Sammy to lend her encyclopedic knowledge of health issues to the crafting of a landmark prescription drug bill. But, oh! What's this? The Bramer team has gutted everything important from Sammy’s draft, and Senator Gary is going to go along with it! It’s a painful lesson in political compromise, and there is further pain to come. Aaron is an awfully hard partier, and there are unpleasant, unexplained gaps in his schedule. Sammy’s best friend Liza thinks he's a rat. Many, many e-mails fly (BlackBerry gets fabulous product placement), and several more fighting fish die as political and romantic alliances form and re-form. Gore goes for a zany but sweet tone while protecting her dad’s, and maybe even her own, political viability with lots of discreet veiling.

High jinks ’n’ politics. Whee!

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2004
ISBN: 1-4013-5219-7
Page count: 400pp
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1st, 2004


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