Misplaced Lives

Barbara Victor, Author HarperCollins Publishers $19.95 (293p) ISBN 978-0-06-016373-0
The unexpected death of her overbearing ex-husband, district attorney Pete Molloy, brings Gabriella Carlucci-Molloy back to Long Island from Paris, where she has the conventional romance-novel glamour job of photojournalist. At Pete's gravesite, Gabriella gets the cold shoulder from her angry college-age daughter Dina, who, if she only knew it, has much in common with her mom, including abysmal taste in men; both women gravitate toward men so narcissistic one wonders if Victor ( Absence of Pain ) is striving for parody. Before Pete's coffin is lowered into the ground, however, Gabriella steals the heart of Nick Tressa, a diamond-in-the-rough contractor. The story coasts along on predictable misunderstandings between mother and daughter, and Gabriella and Nick, that must be thrashed out before love takes its course. Gabriella's warm, crusty, stifling family is appealingly drawn, but the novel's stale situations and mostly stock characters are forgettable; daughter Dina is a pill. BOMC alternate. (June)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1990
Release date: 01/01/1990
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