Issue: April 15, 2010
McPhee, Martha (Author) Jun 2010. 352 p. Houghton, hardcover, $25.00. (9780151011650).
With four moderately successful novels under her belt, India Palmer knows better than to pin her hopes for financial independence on the publication of her fifth. Unlike her husband, avant-garde sculptor Theodor Larson, who truly believes in art-for-art’s-sake, India has no illusions that her writing will ever be able to support her insatiable catalog of wants and her family’s interminable list of needs. So when Wall Street tycoon Win Johns swoops into her life like an Armani-clad avenging angel with promises to turn her into a bond-trading whiz kid, India accepts his challenge without so much as a backward glance. Has she willingly allowed herself to become Galatea to Win’s Pygmalion or unwittingly sold her soul to the devil? Although no one can profess to comprehend the complexities of the current economic quagmire, McPhee dishes its jargon with all the aplomb of someone who TiVos CNBC. Delivering virulent social satire with a velvet, humanitarian touch, McPhee’s timely send-up deftly parodies the fallout from misplaced priorities.
— Carol Haggas