A magical one-night stand with a strapping South African wildlife ranger has unexpected consequences in this screwball rom-com with a winningly sardonic heroine.
Still smarting from a humiliating Valentine’s Day breakup with lying louse Richard, literary agency assistant Kas Sienkiewicz has just about had it with guys when she agrees to join pals Max and Libby on a deluxe African safari courtesy of Max’s rich father. Her resolve is tested mightily when she sets eyes on the clock-stopping vision of hotness who just happens to be their guide at the Akuji Game Reserve. Blue-eyed, 6’4” William is gracious, friendly and, to the startled delight of self-deprecating Kas, actually seems to fancy her. On their last night at the reserve, goaded by Max and Libby, she invites William up to her chalet for an evening she hopes at the very least will be a fine memory. Back home in Manhattan, she is stunned to receive a semi-literate email from William; he’s lost his job for sleeping with Kas and is now headed to New York to seek his fortune. Also, he loves her and wants to stay with her. Before she has time to sort out this new turn of events, William has arrived. The cute ranger uniform has been replaced by a series of brightly colored track suits and a tasseled fez he claims helps “inspire” him to work on his lifelong dream: a nonfiction treatise on the political situation in Monaco. The fact that he can barely spell matters not to confident William, prompting Kas to wonder if he is a moron, or just an innocent abroad. Either way, around the time he installs a waterbed in her tiny apartment she realizes that she must find a way to get him out. Meanwhile, she finds herself intrigued by a new client whose witty novel is right up her alley.
Often laugh-out-loud funny, Kirkus editor Szewczyk’s well-observed debut is a quirky, perverse take on dating that easily rises above the singleton genre competition.