Book Review: Sammy’s Hill

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Sammy’s Hill by Kristen Gore. Review by Kris Harding

Samantha Joyce works as a health care analyst for the junior senator from Ohio.  This book has been called “chick lit for political junkies” because it is as much about Sammy’s dating mishaps as about the ins and outs of life in the pressure cooker of Washington politics. More neurotic than most, the heroine is a hypochondriac, who imagines she has every disease she reads about in the course of her work.  Prone to envisioning detailed scenarios of what might happen in both her career and her love life, she spends considerable time figuring out how to cope with disasters that never occur.

Somewhat klutzy, she literally falls in the lap of a reporter on the day that the senior citizen that she’s arranged to testify in committee about obtaining cheaper drugs from Canada, shows up under the influence of marijuana that he also smuggled in with his prescription drugs. She’s also a magnet for spilled drinks, barfing drunks, and her boss’s toddler’s leaky diaper (on a suede skirt of course and right before an important date.)  An impossibly beautiful but very supportive girlfriend with her own bad choices in men and a Siamese fighting fish who keeps coming back from the brink of death (though he’s lasted longer than the ones who came before) round out Sammy’s “family.”  In the year and a half covered by the book, Sammy’s life is complicated by three interesting men (though she breaks out in neck rash whenever she’s attracted to a man) as well as by the work of government.  And it’s all hilarious.

Raised in Washington, D.C. and the daughter of former Senator, Vice-President and Presidential candidate Al Gore, thirty-one–year-old Kristin Gore certainly has the insider info to write such a book.  Her comedy chops were sharpened as the first woman on the Harvard Lampoon, and she went on to write for Saturday Night Live (for which she won both an Emmy and a Writer’s Guild of America award) and Fox’s animated sitcom, Futurama.

Also available at the library you can read Sammy’s Hill sequel, Sammy’s House. I recommend them both for a breezy read that will have you laughing out loud.  It’s almost time for Florida vacations and these would make great beach reads.

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