Friday, July 02, 2004

Man Trouble

Cassandra French’s Finishing School for Boys by Eric Garcia ($24.95 HarperCollins hardcover 298 pp.)

There’s nothing wrong with Cassandra French that a decade or two in therapy couldn’t cure.

After a lifetime of bad dates inflicted on her by selfish, classless, ignorant and arrogant men, Cassandra snapped. This well-to-do attorney and girl-about-town refused to let another bad date go unpunished. She flipped the script and dumped the offending guy into the trunk of her car (he was drunk), drove home and then shackled him in her basement so she could train him in the art of being a man.

Soon Cassandra has three men in her basement and her lively social life promises more pupils to come. Her cushy job allows her time to come home and prepare lunch for them and check up on their assignments, which include fashion coordinating, problem solving (kind of like those word problems in math class), and learning to lip-synch with abandon.

When she’s not hanging out with her best friend Claire, a TV executive, and their sidekick Lexi, she’s trying to move up the corporate ladder while avoiding a lecherous boss and teaching and taking care of her “boys.”

The apple may not fall far from the tree. Cassandra’s mother is under house arrest for telemarketing fraud, but it’s really her missing husband’s fault. Since she’s forbidden from having a phone when she wants to speak to Cassandra she stops strangers on the street and asks them to call her and tell her to come over.

But of course, things start to go wrong. First, there’s the movie star date that goes sour, then Claire’s psychiatrist/lover dumps her for someone more neurotic, and Lexi’s dogs get impounded and must be rescued. And there’s the matter of the dead body to be disposed of.

This hilarious and felonious satire will have you laughing out loud and chuckling for days afterward.

Eric Garcia is the author of Matchstick Men, which was recently made into a film starring Nicholas Cage. He is also the author of the dinosaur mysteries Anonymous Rex, Casual Rex and Hot and Sweaty Rex. Visit his website at:
Buy from

No comments:

Post a Comment