Swimming with Bridgeport Girls: A Novel
Everybody adores Ray Parisi. He’s handsome, charming, and knows just the right thing to say. He even used to be on TV! Unfortunately, all the good things in Ray’s life are memories now. Now he’s living at the Parkway Motor Lodge, dodging bill collectors and scheming to win his wife back. Ray refuses to think of his love as his ex-wife; this divorce thing is a minor plot twist in the narrative of their life together. He will do anything to win her back, including high-stakes gambling in Vegas, breaking into Graceland, and crashing her wedding. The warrant for his arrest and the angry bookie on his trail are inconvenient road blocks, but not insurmountable obstacles.
It’s hard not to feel a little sorry for Ray Parisi. Although he makes terrible decisions, ignores the consequences, and neglects the people caught in the cross-fire, his single-minded focus on restoring his marriage and his absolute confidence in himself are endearing. When he finally catches up to the object of his affections, she tells him, “You’ve been given everything in a world where people have nothing. And you just don’t care. You don’t do anything.” Ray’s life-long method of problem-solving, ignore it and hope the problem will go away, has kept him from growing and “doing something.” Swimming with Bridgeport Girls is a funny and insightful character study of a man who has it all but lets it slip away.
|Simon & Schuster
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