ALMA MATER by Rita Mae Brown


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Twosomes and threesomes at an ivy-covered Virginia college, from the author of Rubyfruit Jungle (1983), etc., and the popular Sneaky Pie Brown mystery series.

Vic Savedge is a knockout and six feet tall to boot. She’s dating football player Charly Harrison, scion of a distinguished Virginia clan that even produced a president, much to her mother’s delight. The Savedge women are not above a little scheming when it comes to marrying well, and they have what it takes to do it right. Gorgeous Vic is a clone of her mother R.J., a black-haired, green-eyed beauty who gossips incessantly with her sister Bunny. They still believe that a woman is only as good as the man she’s with, much to Vic’s dismay. It may be 1980, but apparently they’ve never heard of feminism. Mother and aunt are determined to see Vic safely wed—especially now that R.J.’s feckless husband Frank has just lost most of the family money in the stock market. Vic has other things on her mind, like getting a job to pay her tuition and playing a little less lacrosse, even though she and best friend Jinx are the most important members of the team. But then she meets Chris Carter, a very pretty, very blond student from Vermont and is immediately attracted to her—and very confused by that attraction. Could it be that she’s . . . gay? Only a little sexual experimenting will tell, but juggling two lovers proves difficult. Fortunately, clueless Charly doesn’t even notice—until he and Chris and Vic end up in a hot threesome. Vic doesn’t know what to do. But why choose? “Why accept the world’s limiting structures?” She indulges in similar sophomoric musings about relationships, until a campus prank lands them all in hot water. Somehow, this inconsequential event helps them all grow up a little. End of story.

Sketchy characterization and desultory writing don’t exactly fill in the blanks between sex scenes, and the college-lesbian romance seems awfully dated—when not embarrassingly rapturous.

Pub Date: Nov. 1st, 2001
ISBN: 0-345-42820-X
Page count: 272pp
Publisher: Ballantine
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1st, 2001


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