Closing Costs

Seth Margolis, Author
Seth Margolis, Author . St. Martin's $24.95 (308p) ISBN 978-0-312-35368-1
Paperback - 308 pages - 978-0-312-36930-9
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The white-hot Manhattan real estate market forms the backdrop for Margolis's fifth novel, a pithy but slow-moving ensemble character study that weaves together the tales of several Manhattan couples trying to survive on the housing bubble's uncertain edge. The novel opens with Lucinda Wells, a gorgeous, high-power real estate maven, orchestrating the buying and selling of upscale apartments. Her most intriguing clients are the Granthams, who have to sell their digs after the Feds arrest Barnett Grantham for allegedly embezzling millions from his employer. He soon flees the country, leaving his wife, Lily (and the G-men) to track him down. Unfortunately, the other story lines are less lively; in a far more ordinary subplot, the upwardly mobile Guy and Rosemary Pearson see their future (and apartment financing) wither when Pearson's software company stock tanks and he becomes the victim of a corporate ouster. The well-drawn characters complement Margolis's wry observations on Manhattan life and the ups and downs of marriage and career, and though the real estate angle may fail to pique those living west of the Hudson, it will certainly resonate with New Yorkers. (Aug.)

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