A pulpishly effective nightmare about a woman whose Manhattan roommate seems to be taking over her life, her lover, and her identity. Free-lance computer consultant Alison James advertises for a roommate (""SWF SEEKS SAME"") after a spat with her live-in Sam Rawson sends him packing Meantime, things continue to go downhill: Allie's one client fires her when she refuses to come across, and she worries about where the rent, even shared, will come from. The only bright spot is her friendship with waiter-playwright Graham Knox, whose play is about to open off-off-Broadway. Just as Allie had had to pretend she didn't live with Sam in order to evade the no-roommate clause in her lease, she tries to hide mousy, painfully self. effacing Hedra Carlson from her indifferent neighbors. But her success backfires when Hedra--who's been borrowing Allie's clothes, masquerading as Allie to pickups who want to reach out and touch her (as Allie) via obscene phone calls, and dressing as her in order to seduce Sam in his hotel room across town--stakes out her claim to Allie's life by killing Sam and disappearing, leaving Allie, bereft of witnesses to Hedra's existence, to take the rap. Having successively lost her job, her credit cards, her claims to innocence, and her home, Allie goes on the streets as a beggar, then a thief, before veteran Lutz (Tropical Heat, Dancer's Debt, etc.) gives her a disappointingly softhearted ending that proves she's really herself. Gotham paranoia at its creepiest.