Thirtyish devotee of London fetish clubs looks for love.
Hardworking publicist for trendy chefs and cookbooks by day, rubber-clad slut by night, Juliet Cooper would rather snog than flog—unlike her best friend Mel, who enslaves pathetic single men for fun and whips the married ones for money. Both are utterly blasé about this no-longer-underground pastime, but Juliet is beginning to wonder whether there’s more to life than snorting coke and having casual sex with brutish strangers. What is the point, when no one at the office even asks who gave you the bright red hickeys on your neck? She supposes—yawn, yawn—it’s just as well they can’t see the bruises everywhere else. (Note to worried mothers: Juliet, a sensible girl at heart, brings along a warm zip-up on these freaky outings so as not to catch a chill.) Well, Juliet’s little romp with the giant Dutch stud in leather pants was interesting while it lasted, but she thanks her lucky piercings that she doesn’t have to see him again. Brace yourselves, angels of darkness, for a now-standard chick-lit epiphany: Could it be that she is skittish about commitment? How utterly fascinating and original of her. She must talk this over with her bored-out-of-their-vinyl-corsets chums immediately. Oh, no! Her only normal friend, Gillian, is divorcing her boring husband, so obviously marriage is as meaningless as everything else. So, anyway, should Jules date androgynous Liam, the hyperactive celebrity chef who loves to flaunt the new tattoo on his perfect buttocks (oh, Lord, he sleeps with everyone) or succumb to the charms of Alex, an architect?
There’s more than a faint whiff of desperation in all this self-conscious decadence. Lackluster effort from the author of the Sam Jones mystery series (Pretty Boy, 2002, etc.).