AMBITION'S WOMAN by Jeanne Jones


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Haute cuisine and even haute-er habitations in London and America garnish this glitzy media romance, which chirps along in diet-soda prose. Lady Andrea Harrington is owner of a posh catering service in New York and star of the PBS-type ""Gourmet Adventures"" (in which she sautÉes with sex appeal). But now Andrea wants bigger TV bucks, to the chagrin of producer and former lover, Sid Fogel--who storms out of their restaurant meeting tight after the tortellini. Why is Andrea so ambitious? Well, most of the rest of the novel is an explanatory flashback. There's childhood in Cleveland, where she doesn't have all the good stuff her rich classmates do, then Northwestern drama courses to a smash Broadway play, and a brief spate of nothing films, including one shot on the preserves of Sir George Harrington in London. Andrea's old friend, gay caterer Bruce Halliwell, eggs her on: ""You've always wanted a mansion and hot and cold running servants. . . ."" And so Sir George and Andrea are married, and their home, where brilliant food is served, becomes a social mecca. However, after the birth and death of the Harrington baby, George reunes with a lover--restaurateur Riccardo Bianchetti--so Andrea and George have it out, George admits he's broke, Andrea sees him expire from a heart attack, and she moves to Bruce's New York catering firm. Success follows, with Sid and the TV show, and oil-man lover Hayes Caldwell, who calls her ""honey bunch."" But watch out--because Riccardo blames Andrea for George's death and the bad press for his new catering firm: at a Metropolitan Museum bash around the pool and those playful bronze dolphins, Riccardo goes after her with a knife, is himself speared by a fin, and thrashes to his death. Finally, then, Andrea almost succumbs to Hayes' pleas to simmer for him alone--but then comes Sid's news of an offer from a commercial network. . . . No real inside stuff on the food biz; it's more menu reading than mixing bowl inspection. And the whole thing is essentially fast food all the way: low-protein, a little greasy, but basically harmless.

Pub Date: Oct. 6th, 1981
Publisher: Evans