Saturday, January 29, 2011

Review: French-Pressed, by Cleo Coyle (2008)

French Pressed by Cleo Coyle:

"Oh? So now the flatfoot is more than a passing law enforcement fetish? He's potential husband material? And this happened after a month of his not sleeping with you?"
I threw the second shoe.

Synopsis: Please clean up after your love life. Your mother doesn't work here.

There's apparently a new phenomenon in higher education, the "helicopter": the parent or parents who hover over their kid's shoulder as they go through school, doing everything for them, making sure their way is not just clear but paved with diamonds and rose petals, so special are they.

It's sort of a boggling phenomenon to me, but then I encountered this book. Clare Cosi is part-owner and proprietor of a successful West Village coffeehouse, but has a nasty habit of stumbling over murdered corpses. As you do. When her daughter Joy begins sleeping with the older, married chef at her cooking internship, Clare leaps in at every turn to tell Joy how to handle her life, scolding her for her choices, actively trying to break up the couple and then--here's the kicker--confronting the guy and asking him to break up with her daughter.

Then he's killed and Joy's found wailing over the corpse. Good parenting, there.

Apart from the first 100 pages, this book isn't all that bad. It's decently written, there are several intersecting subplots and Clare's messy life is appealing to read about. Eventually she calms down, but basically only dials it back to "light glider". Also, her descriptions of food are somehow unappealing, but the coffee descriptions delicious.

However, for the mother thing, I am handing out the dreaded silver unicorn. It just made me grind my teeth like crazy. However, I was sort of trapped with this book after I'd started it, and Coyle does do a good NYC, I'll give her that.

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