A DATE YOU CAN’T REFUSE by Harley Jane Kozak


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A greeting-card illustrator goes undercover to assure safe housing for her schizophrenic brother.

Just because juror Wollstonecraft Shelley (Dead Ex, 2007, etc.) voted Yuri Milos not responsible for injuries sustained by the plaintiff doesn’t obligate her to accept his offer of a job as a “social coach” for his company, MediasRex. Then Federal agent Bennett Graham points out that the FBI, which wants an informant inside the firm, could help ensure that Wollie’s brother P.B. doesn’t get kicked out of Haven Lane, a group home for psychiatric patients, despite his frequent curfew violations. So Wollie takes a break from designing “Happy Rhinoplasty” cards and moves into the Milos compound in gated Palomino Hills, where Yuri and his current spouse, personal trainer Kimberly, live in relative harmony with his ex-wife Donatella and Alik and Parashie, two children from previous relationships, all under the baleful eye of Grusha, his former mother-in-law. Teaching Yuri’s foreign-born clients American customs isn’t bad, even if they’re mildly lecherous, like boxer Zbigniew Shpek, or hopeless divas like Bronwen Bjoelin. But sleeping in the room of her predecessor Chai, who was killed in a car crash, definitely creeps out Wollie. It creeps out her boyfriend Simon Alexander, an FBI agent on an undercover assignment, even more. As the lovers tussle over whose job puts their relationship at greater risk, Wollie finds her loyalties ever more divided.

Though awash in subplots, Kozak’s latest strikes a balanced note—sharp and witty but heartfelt.

Pub Date: March 17th, 2009
ISBN: 978-0-385-51803-1
Page count: 336pp
Publisher: Broadway
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1st, 2009


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