by Jody Gehrman

July 2005
ISBN: 0-373-89526-7
Reviewer Graphic Button Red Dress Ink
Trade Paperback

Claudia Bloom thinks her luck can't get any worse when the VW bus she has stolen from her ex-boyfriend catches on fire and blows up when she is en route from Texas to Santa Cruz. She is rescued by hunky DJ Clay and has to start over again with the clothes on her back and her long-suffering cat. After a night of passion, Claudia meets Clay's soon- to- be ex-wife. This would be a mild embarrassment, but accelerates into a nightmare when it turns out the two women will be colleagues at the local university where Claudia is to teach. To add more fuel to the fire, Clay's mom is Claudia's new boss. When Claudia's cousin Rosemarie shows up with a huge dog named Rex and many unresolved issues of her own, Claudia knows her life has hit a new low.

Claudia's life goal in her twenties has been to live what she calls a tart life. Now that she is coming up on thirty she has to examine her life and deal with new issues and old secrets. Claudia is a more edgy protagonist than most, even for the chick-lit genre. The reader may not always approve of her choices and actions, but cannot help but be intrigued and drawn into her life. Rosemarie is a study in contrast with her cousin, but her story is not all maudlin. Hers is a story that is ultimately uplifting. Clay is a pivotal character and love interest more than a true hero. He has his own issues, but is basically a caring person.

Tart is a book that is both entertaining and thought provoking. If you are looking for something a bit more edgy with ironic humor, look no further than this sexy, tangy tale.

Reviewed in July 2005 by Roberta.

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