Laura Rider's Masterpiece
PAGE 14
By Jane Hamilton
224 pages; Grand Central

"It is, after all, a universal truth that women lose weight when they fall in love"—that's one toast to the spirit of Jane Austen in Jane Hamilton's arch new novel, Laura Rider's Masterpiece. Laura, who has a garden design business, is a would-be romance writer; her husband, Charlie, a dewy-eyed stud. From a distance (Laura's artful e-mails) and up close (Charlie's hunky blond attentiveness), the two beguile and seduce Laura's idol, Jenna Faroli, a radio talk show host. A lightly literary tour de farce. — Cathleen Medwick


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