FISHBOWL

Author(s): 

Allie, Jodine and Emma are unlikely twentysomething roommates living in Toronto. Allie is a bubbly, childlike fundraiser who is still a virgin, but she is convinced that her hunky friend Clint is her soulmate. Jodine is a list-making neurotic who sleeps with fellow law student Manny because he really likes her, and well, because it's convenient. Emma is an uninhibited editorial assistant who recently dumped her controlling boyfriend Nick.

Inevitably, the three women get on each other's nerves and learn that having roommates means having little privacy—like living in a fishbowl. But when an accidental fire leads to big repair bills (they don't have insurance), the three women band together to raise money. They throw several parties and give a seminar for men called "How To Pick Up Women." As their money woes begin to disappear, they become friends, but their romances threaten everything.

Although freshly written in three different first-person perspectives, this novel is plagued with unsympathetic characters. Allie is annoying, naove and oblivious. Jodine is anal-retentive and doesn't appreciate Manny. Emma is selfish and takes advantage of Allie. All is not lost, though. There are a few laugh-out-loud moments, and an ingenious use for hair scrunchies is divulged. (Oct., 312pp., $12.95)

Reviewed by: 
Samantha J. Gust