cover image Magnolia


Carolina Garcia-Aguilera. B&B (, $16.95 trade paperback (404p) ISBN 978-0-9839378-4-5

Garcia-Aguilera (One Hot Summer) creates a lovably imperfect heroine in this Pretty Woman–type tale. Blonde, blue-eyed Magnolia Larson left Minneapolis behind when she followed her boyfriend, Fred, to Miami. Turns out he didn’t know the meaning of fidelity, and she couldn’t find a job with her art history degree. Down to her last few dollars and nursing a rum and coke in a decrepit bar, she meets Oona O’Ryan, a sports agent looking for an “edge”—a way to keep from losing clients—and sees it in Magnolia. Oona convinces her to become a high-priced call girl, or “sports geisha,” for her clients. The author paints a believable scenario whereby the innocent, Midwestern Catholic girl—who wanted to start an art school for underprivileged kids—now engages in exotic sexual activities such as BDSM and pony play. While she enjoys the attendant luxury perks of her new lifestyle, Magnolia increasingly feels conflicted about the way she’s earning it and soon must make a choice: her self-respect or her bank account. Despite an abrupt and somewhat unsatisfying ending, readers will fall in love with Magnolia in this engaging tale of what unexpected choices can be made when one’s back is against the wall. (Dec.)