Random House, Jun 2003, 23.95
Boston surgical intern Alice Thrift is a genius with an IQ in the stratosphere and a Harvard degree. Ray Russo is street educated dropped out. They meet when Ray pursues rhinoplastic surgery (a nose job).
For a reason only he knows, sweet talking Ray courts the caustic Alice, known for her terrorist bedside manner. Shockingly, the brilliant Alice, after shunning Ray's pitch as nonsense, finally capitulates. They have sex leading to her realizing that there is more to life than work. Yet ironically her work improves and she even makes a friend Sylvie Schwartz at the hospital. When her platonic former roommate registered nurse Leo Frawley and Sylvie flirt with one another, Alice feels lonely. Vulnerable, she elopes with Ray only to learn he conned her out of cash and his “deceased” first wife lives with him. Leo and Sylvie are there for Alice, who bitterly knows she failed her first life lesson.
Though Alice is not a likable character, fans will feel her loneliness and hope she makes it with someone who cherishes her and she treasures in return. Ray is a mean man while Leo and Sylvie are people the audience would like as friends. The bittersweet story line may seem rough to romance readers, but actually salutes friendship when one thinks a friend in need is a pest and prefers not to become involved, but does so anyway.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner