cover image Capitol Punishment: An Andy Hayes Mystery

Capitol Punishment: An Andy Hayes Mystery

Andrew Welsh-Huggins. Ohio Univ./Swallow, $27.95 (272p) ISBN 978-0-8040-1171-6

Ohio politics provide the backdrop for Welsh-Huggins’s nicely plotted third mystery featuring disgraced former OSU quarterback Andy Hayes (after 2015’s Slow Burn). Freelance reporter Lee Hershey, who’s been covering a school-funding proposal by Ohio Democrats called Fair Funding Focus (“Leave it to the Democrats” to miss the fact that the acronym is all Fs, Hershey notes), worries that he’s being followed, and he hires Andy, now a struggling Columbus PI, to protect him. A lot of politicians, lobbyists, educators, and entrepreneurs have an interest in the outcome, in particular Ohio governor Thomas Hubbard, who wants to impress presidential candidate JoAnn Rodriguez, a California senator, enough to become her vice-presidential running mate. The stakes rise with the discovery of Hershey’s dead body in the Ohio Capitol rotunda. Andy must navigate a minefield of powerful personalities with few inhibitions in a cautionary tale that’s a perfect read in an election year. (Apr.)