Growing up, Roxanne, Del, and Alice tested the limits of their friendship with cruel and often dangerous games - safe in the knowledge that they were bound together forever.
Now, Alice's marriage is over, and her husband is having a child with another woman. Roxanne, an artist consumed by her work, is losing touch with her friends - and perhaps with reality. And Del is desperate to be a perfect wife and adoring stepmother, but her friends see that her careful facade is crumbling.
The instrument of their destruction is the enigmatic Varick. He seems to be a lonely woman's dream come true, but as he seduces each of the women in turn, their lives become unrecognizable to them - and their souls, perhaps irretrievable.
Varick's secret lies buried in their shared past. One simple, childish act has brought them, all these years later, to a place where their lives are at risk. For once upon a time, the three of them agreed to tell a lie - one that ruined a life - And now they all must live with the consequences....
About the Author
Laura Benedict's first novel was Isabella Moon . She lives in Southern Illinois with her husband and two children.
A Faustian pact that might have been made by the Count of Monte Cristo plays out in present-day Cincinnati.Years ago, three schoolgirls who dabbled in sex, spying and the magic arts of Santeria made a shocking accusation against their math teacher. The truth beneath their allegation was ugly enough, but the spin they put on it got Father Romero rusticated to a monastery in Iowa, far from more supposed temptation. Before his bus arrived at its destination, however, the troubled Cuban-born priest disembarked. He settled into a secular life and eventually ran into a mysterious fixer named Varick, with whom he struck a bargain: "Romero's life for the promise of the ruin of Del, Alice, and Roxanne." In the years since their last meeting, Roxanne has blossomed into a floridly promiscuous painter; febrile Alice has inherited a bundle, married dentist Thad Hudson and resigned herself to a life without the children she craves; and Delilah - well, it's not quite clear what to make of Del, because apart from doing her best to mother Wendy, the five-year-old daughter of her divorce-lawyer husband, she doesn't leave much of an impression. Neither does Dillon McVay, the angry teenager whose sister Amber has been promoted from Thad's office to his bed. Even Varick comes off not as powerfully sinister but as a comic-book villain in need of a cup of coffee. Because Benedict (Isabella Moon, 2007) hasn't decided just how otherworldly she wants to make the fantastical tale of Romero's revenge, it veers uncontrollably from kitchen-sink naturalism to things that go bump in the night. The book appears to have been thought out in terms of a series of set pieces. Without a sustained plot, it never gathers the momentum or generates the sympathy its subject might seem to guarantee.Lacks both the juice of genre thrillers and the penetration of literary fiction. (Kirkus Reviews)
Number Of Pages: 314
Published: 7th May 2009
Dimensions (cm): 23.2 x 15.2 x 2.5
Weight (kg): 0.438