by Denene Miller, Nick Chiles

February 2003
ISBN: 0-451-29778-5
Reviewer Graphic Button Putnam
Trade Paperback

Randy Murphy and Mikki Chance-Murphy were happily married for three years when Randy was offered a job in Paris. Mikki, a fashion designer, stays behind in Brooklyn to keep her bridal boutique in business. She’s not happy about her husband going off to Paris, and he’s not thrilled about leaving her. But they both think that it’s just temporary, so Randy goes to ‘The City of Lights’, while Mikki stays home and minds the shop. But absence does not make the heart grow fonder, as Mikki and Randy soon find out. Randy is stunned to see that in Paris, a black man gets overt looks and flirting from women. He’s used to the attitudes in the states, and finds the French’s non racist outlook refreshing. He also runs into a beautiful runway model the first week in Paris, and despite himself, finds himself attracted to her. Mikki, back home, has turned to Randy’s best friend, Marcus, for comfort, and she’s horrified to find herself very attracted to him. The inevitable happens, Randy sleeps with Marie, the model and Mikki starts an affair with Marcus. But Randy and Mikki are still in love with each other, and want desperately to find a way to make their marriage work. But how can they forgive each other?

This book takes place in a short time period but a lot happens. Written with alternating ‘he said’, ‘she said’ chapters, the reader gets a privileged look into each character’s head. Often the reader gets to see both sides of a single incident, and the way that each character perceives what happens is certainly an eye-opener. This book dug deeply into the lives and feelings of two intelligent, sensitive people who love each other, but who strayed. It’s a story of personal growth, of freedom and responsibility, and especially, of forgiveness. It explores marriage and unfaithfulness, but it also looks at how childhood and relations with parents can affect a marriage. Clever, sassy, and well-written, Love Don’t Live Here Anymore is a book that had me laughing and crying, and crossing my fingers that Mikki and Randy found each other again. I’ll certainly be looking out for more books by this duo of talented authors, and in the meantime, I highly recommend this book to anyone who likes to read something romantic and different.

Reviewed in April 2003 by Jennifer.