by Steve Martin
Modern love is a complex thing. Place it within the Rich milieu of Rodeo Drive and Los Angeles, and it becomes a sordid and complex thing. Steve Martin, famous for his outrageous comedy and gentle movies, writes a sometimes touching story of Mirabelle and her search for love and meaning in her simple life. She sells gloves in an obscure and forgotten department of Nieman Marcus. And she is an artist who is taking anti-depressants as she struggles with what her life should become. Into this life walks fabulously wealthy Ray Porter, who sweeps Mirabelle off her feet into a world of romance she only fantasized about. Meanwhile, he is only interested in a little fling. Mirabelle is in denial, and Ray doesn't realize how much he really cares for her. This is a doomed relationship. Martin is an accomplished writer. He tells Mirabelle's story with insight and compassion. And he seems to know well the power of a man with lots of money. In fact, some readers suggest Martin is telling a story of personal experience, and perhaps an apology. I'm not so sure. But Martin's style is sure, and his voice is occasionally funny, often gentle. He leaves a few loose ends, perhaps taking on a little too much for such a short book, but this is a nice little novella.
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