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by Caprice Crane

Pub Date: May 12th, 2006
ISBN: 0-446-69572-6
Publisher: 5 Spot/Grand Central Publishing

Two 20-something New Yorkers squabble and flirt their way across the country.

A laid back, music-obsessed dreamer in the Nick Hornby mold, struggling indie-rock producer Brady Gilbert is reasonably sure, after losing his rent-controlled apartment in a breakup, that a girlfriend is the last thing he needs. Still, he is intrigued when he moves in next door to Heaven Albright. Lissome, quirky and frequently obnoxious, Heaven pops into Brady’s apartment unannounced, opens his mail and generally finds ways to both fascinate and annoy him. A former PR flack and woefully inept waitress, Heaven is tossed from the hipster Asian restaurant where she works after one of her jokes goes too far. With time on her hands, she cheerfully oversteps all of Brady’s boundaries and insists on accompanying her new neighbor on a trip to Los Angeles, where he intends to check out and sign a talented high-school rock band. In L.A., Heaven crosses paths with her ex, a smarmy A&R rep for a big record company interested in the same band as Brady. After Heaven spends the night with his rival, Brady cannot decide what is worse, losing his band, or losing Heaven. The not-quite couple then stop in Seattle, where Brady hopes to present his improbable but inspired entrepreneurial idea—Cinnamilk—to Starbucks mastermind Howard Schultz. Good intentions, combined with poor judgment, result in the two getting arrested outside a vigil commemorating the death of Kurt Cobain. With a title taken from a Nirvana song and Brady’s fixation with obscure bands and even more obscure snack foods, Crane’s basic boy-meets-girl story is at times a bit too enamored of its own caffeine-fueled pop-culture cred.

Crane’s witty romantic comedy debut will be best appreciated by those raised on a steady diet of MTV.