In reading this story about politics and power, it amazes me that it's in a novel and not on the front page of today's paper.
A lovely young girl walks into the U.S. Capitol as if one of her dreams was about to come true. Moments later she falls to her death from the balcony of U.S. Congressman Lionel, Washington's most powerful political figure.
Assistant U.S. attorney Anna Curtis is ordered to drop whatever she's doing and get to the scene. When she does, she's greeted by a scene of chaos. There are members of the Capitol Police, FBI, Washington Police and Secret Service around the woman's body and surrounding area.
Murmers are going around the gathering about Congressman Lionel and how delicate an investigation would have to be since the setting of a Congressman's office has been held to be off limits to law enforcement officials.
Anna sees this as the chance of a lifetime. She also has a romantic relationship with the chief investigator in homicide. He has been mentioned for a promotion so if he becomes involved in the investigation, it could be considered a conflict of interest.
The investigation leads Anna to Discretion, a high priced escort service and the girl who fell to her death was considered that agency's top escort.
The characters are wonderfully multi-deminsional. Anna's romance, her idea of taking self defense classes to round out her philosophy.
The story of the escorts is heart wrenching. We often stereotype people and think of this escort as a prostitute. However, she was a college student, paying her own way through one of the most expensive universities. She was at the top of the world of escorts while other women who she worked with, quickly became wasted and fell to drugs, street hustling and the need of a pimp.
This is more than a mystery, it's a story of successful women and women who fall a long way to the bottom of society.