cover image The Remedy for Love

The Remedy for Love

Bill Roorbach. Algonquin, $24.95 (320p) ISBN 978-1-61620-331-3

Roorbach’s latest (after Life Among Giants) begins on the eve of the first big snowstorm of the season in the woods of Maine, with smalltown defense lawyer Eric waiting in line behind a raggedly dressed, strikingly thin young woman with matted hair who is counting change to pay for her paltry pile of groceries. Eric feels “something rumbling inside him,” impelling him to act. Spotting her struggling with bags in the parking lot, he offers her a lift, and this act of kindness feels so good—and alien—to him after a particularly bad year that he turns up unbidden at the door of the small riverside cabin in which she’s squatting, convinced that she is now his responsibility. This view is not shared by “Danielle, for now,” as she warily introduces herself. Predictably, they are trapped by the storm, woefully underprepared, and forced to weather it together. Danielle’s careening and unpredictable personality seems an odd fit for Eric’s mellow character. Roorbach does little to subvert the classic male rescue fantasy. (Oct.)