RESTRAINT by Sherry Sonnett


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 This sexual thriller purports to reverse gender roles as the heroine goes from passive bystander to full-blown predator in both the boardroom and the bedroom. It's only an excuse for a bevy of raucous, lascivious entanglements--but, oh, what an excuse! First novelist Sonnett never holds back in her tale of Vega, who prospers as the head of her own small financial planning firm in Los Angeles. One night, Vega's ex-husband, Don, who remains a close friend, introduces her to a tall, dark, and handsome man; she knows from the first moment that Paul is dangerous, ``someone who could turn me inside out.'' They begin spending all their free time together, and Paul draws her out sexually. She gives in to his ``cocksure certainty'' and soon finds herself falling from her comfortable position of conservatism and control: She enjoys having Paul suck her shoe's spiked heel, likes sporting obscenely large falsies under a red silk camisole, takes pleasure from threesomes with a prostitute. Her newfound openness also leads to a one-afternoon stand with Paul's friend Gaby (an experience Vega dismisses with a faintly homophobic shrug: ``Was Gaby, or even someone like her, to be my fate? Something in me rose up in protest'') and a passionate sexual encounter with Don, with whom there had previously been zero heat, after he reveals that he likes dressing up in women's clothes. Sonnett fills in the gaps between lust with financial philandering. Vega discovers that Paul is involved in some shady dealings and soon finds herself caught up in the quick-profit potential of ``borrowing'' her clients' money for short periods of time. But when it becomes obvious that Paul has been using her to bring down her beloved mentor, Vega makes the leap of a lifetime. An old-fashioned '80s love story that's pure pulp fun.

Pub Date: Jan. 1st, 1995
ISBN: 0-671-87958-8
Page count: 320pp
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1st, 1994