RIVERSIDE DRIVE by Laura Van Worner


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A vacuous first novel--but one that occasionally reaches out to grab the reader--about hip New Yorkers linked by the same cleaning lady. Rosanne Disantos--a plucky, nonstop wisecracking cleaning woman who is considered a find and quite a ""character""--works for Cassy and Michael Cochran, both successful in TV production (she getting more so) at different stations. He's handsome, alcoholic, and plays around; she's 41 and fears her looks are going: ""Good Lord, she was fading. . .Just fading. From radiance to glow."" She also thinks Michael is making it with the newest anchorwoman in town, the ""Kansas Kitten"" Alexandra Waling. Much to her surprise, however, Alexandra turns out to be gay, and seduces Cassy after she fires Michael for general drunkenness and insubordination. Melissa and Howard Stewart are another hot couple serviced by Rosanne--she's in banking, and frigid; he's a sensitive and very successful editor trying to survive in a Manhattan publishing house that's just been taken over by a ruthless and crass tycoon. Lord knows what he would have done without yet a third of Rosanne's employers--the rich and eccentric Amanda Miller, who is writing an epic about Catherine the Great, and who outdoes her subject in bed. She and Howard pair off--he gets not only her body but her novel, and goes off to start a successful literary agency. With the help of Sam and Harriet Wyatt, an upscale black couple (for whom Rosanne also cleans), Cassy manages to get Michael into detox, and breaks up with Alexandra. That just leaves Mrs. Emma Goldbloom--Rosanne's final employer--a poor old lady cheated out of her husband's pension, whom everyone chips in to help. Soggy, long-winded, and a little foolish, but with moments of interest (particularly Howard's adventures in publishing) and some certifiably sexy scenes. Maybe not enough.

Pub Date: June 6th, 1988
Publisher: Doubleday