After her husband leaves her for his high school sweetheart, freelance writer Fraser (Vogue, Glamour, Self, the San Francisco Examiner Magazine) takes off to Italy to gain a new perspective on her life. There she unexpectedly meets M. (as he is known throughout the book), a married French aesthetics professor, and begins an affair of a lifetime. Often reading like a romance novel, this beautiful tale of self-discovery is purposefully written in the second person so that readers can feel as if they are a part of the story. Fraser alternates chapters between San Francisco (home) and exotic locations like Milan, Morocco, or the Aeolian Islands, where she rendezvous with M., taking her audience on a journey from heartbreak to new love to self-understanding and spiritual revival. In the end, she triumphs by restoring the naturally lively self that was abruptly silenced by the break-up with her husband. Part travelog, part memoir, and part love story in the most traditional sense, this highly personal, honest, funny, and charming account is a joy to read. Essential for all public libraries. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
When her husband of one year left her for an old girlfriend, Fraser (Losing It: False Hopes and Fat Profits in the Diet Industry), in her mid-30s and suddenly alone, was devastated. In a state of shock, she decided to take a trip to Italy. Finding no solace with friends in Florence, she traveled to the island of Ischia, where she met M., a married university professor from France with whom she began a casual affair that continued on and off for the next two years. In this gentle memoir, she tells of her rendezvous with her lover in Milan, Lago Maggiore, London, the Aeolian Islands, Morocco and her own city, San Francisco all the places where they carried on their fairy-tale romance, enjoying beautiful scenery, languorous days in the sun, fabulous meals and good sex. The professor, a man of the world who took such liaisons casually, had an easy, humorous, slightly mocking manner that was just what she needed to help her recover from her broken heart. There were no expectations beyond having a good time. "It's simple," he told her. "All you need is an older man who can handle you, who will take care of you, who will love to have sex with you." What M. offered Fraser was far more satisfying and restorative than the psychologically complicated relationships she found in the San Francisco singles scene. Eventually, she was able to get her groove back and even forgive her husband. Writing in the second person, Fraser steps back and looks at the experience without sentimentality, recounting a tender story that gives hope to women with broken hearts. Agent, Sarah Lazin. (June 7) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
"Sweet, smart. We are smitten from the start." --O: The Oprah Magazine "Luscious. . . . Fraser is such a charmer, so smart, honest, observant, incisive and funny, that within a few pages the reader is entirely hers." -The Washington Post "A beach book for your brain. . . . A sexy, intellectual read." -Redbook "Both a grand travelogue and a thoughtful look at reclaiming independence." -Cond Nast Traveller "A deliciously romantic story, made even more captivating by the idea that someone actually experienced it." -The Times (London)