Hill Games is a novel about politics and the political games that take place in Washington. The setting is the US Congress where an amoral band of schemers who wish to manipulate the legislative process use blackmail, bribery and vice to achieve their ends.
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The issue around which the story revolves is the desire of a consortium of American defense manufacturers to find a way to nullify strict US anti-corruption statutes which apply to international arms sales. Doing so will allow them to win lucrative arms contracts by giving their foreign agents free rein to bribe corrupt foreign officials. They hire Aloysius Flynn, a charming but unscrupulous Washington lobbyist, to organize and implement their strategy. It works well until it is blocked by powerful Senator Lopez-Cruz who sees through the scheme and denounces it. Flynn attempts to blackmail the Senator in order to stifle his opposition. Unsuccessful in that attempt, he releases the damaging information to the press. The Senatorís reputation and health are destroyed, but the blackmail trail leads back to Flynn. Other Senators, outraged at the attempt to manipulate the Senate, join to defeat the scheme to bypass the anti-corruption laws. The invidious attempt to blackmail a Senator shatters Flynnís career in Washington. Drunk, enraged and cursing the Washington elite which has cast him out, he staggers against a balcony railing at his mistressís Watergate apartment and falls to his death. The novel ends at Flynnís funeral, where his former associates assess the ruin of their careers.
As the story progresses, the reader is taken through the visible and backroom pathways of power on Capitol Hill by such characters as Fiddler Guitry, Flynnís shady associate; Patricia Berryman, a modern-day courtesan to the power elite; Harriett Flagg, a muck-raking Washington columnist and Congressman Topper Grady, Flynnís friend and fellow conspirator.