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Poor Little Bitch Girl Hardcover – February 9, 2010
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From Publishers Weekly
At 72, with 26 bestsellers under her belt, Collins (Drop Dead Beautiful) prowls familiar terrain with this overheated tale of the filthy rich, nasty poor, and cravenly ambitious. Collins picks up the saga of the Santangelos with spoiled-brat Annabelle Maestro, the daughter of two Tinseltown icons, who runs a high-priced call-girl ring in New York with her coke-sniffing nogoodnik boyfriend, Frankie. Annabelle's mom's murder brings the black sheep home to L.A. to mourn for a parent she never loved—and to lean on the adventurous Denver, a quick-witted, sex-starved lawyer who's defending the No. 1 suspect in the murder, Annabelle's dad, film legend Ralph Maestro. But Denver also juggles the rescue of his missing best friend, Carolyn, who's fooling around with a horn dog U.S. senator, and a few hot one-night stands. For all the convoluted connections, mismatches, and throw-away references to ripped-from-the-headlines news and celebrities, Collins is at her seasoned best with this raunchy, retro hot-sheets romance. It's men, dollface, one brassy Hollywood agent muses. They all spew forth the same tired old lines. As does Collins. And it's impossible not to fall for it. Again. (Feb.)
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The eponymous “bitch girl” of the title is Annabelle Maestro, the daughter of two famous movie stars who flees L.A. for New York to escape her indifferent parents. She hooks up with coke-addicted DJ Frankie to start a high-priced escort business. And then her mother’s murder makes headlines. Denver Jones, a beautiful, talented attorney who was briefly friendly with Annabelle, is called in when Annabelle’s father, Ralph, becomes a suspect in his wife’s death. Ralph orders Denver to fly to New York to bring Annabelle back for the funeral. In Washington, D.C., Denver’s best friend, Carolyn, is desperately trying to get a hold of her to share some exciting news: Carolyn is pregnant with the child of the married senator she works for. Denver keeps missing Carolyn’s calls because she has her hands full with Annabelle, who returns to L.A. determined to hide her secret business, and with her sights set on Bobby, the devastatingly handsome son of Lucky Santangelo, the heroine of several of Collins’ previous novels. Though the characters are frequently vapid and shallow, their over-the-top antics are undeniably scintillating. Expect plenty of demand for this page-turning sudser. --Kristine Huntley
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Overall, the story moves along rather quickly, but is not as tantalizing as the synopsis suggests. Looking forward to finishing reading Goddess of Vengeance and then the Power Trip and then I’m all caught up with Ms. Collins books to date.
SPOILER ALERT: I did enjoy the characters of Bobby and Denver and was glad to see that they get together in the end and wonder what happens next to them.
One of Bobby's buddies is Frankie, the coke-addicted boyfriend of Annabelle Maestro, another classmate and the daughter of movie star parents. Frankie and Annabelle, perpetually short of cash despite Annabelle's generous allowance, have started their own exclusive call girl business, arranging "dates" between beautiful, sometimes famous women, and rich men. All is running smoothly, until Annabelle's mother, Gemma Sommers, is found murdered, and she and Frankie have to leave their business in Frankie's cousin's hands while they travel to LA for the funeral.
Since the spouse is always a suspect, Annabelle's father, Ralph Maestro, hires a defense attorney immediately, and one of the members of his legal team is Denver, another old classmate of Bobby's. Denver is a hard worker on her way to big things, but when she is sent to New York to collect Annabelle, she finds herself distracted by the handsome men she keeps meeting, and eventually wonders if she's really doing what she wants with her life.
Denver's best friend Carolyn works as an assistant to a senator in Washington, and is also sleeping with her boss. She's in love, and certain that it's only a matter of time before he leaves his wife for her. When she finds out she's pregnant and shares the news, she is convinced a happy future is on the way...until she gets kidnapped under suspicious circumstances.
As always with Jackie Collins, the action moves from character to character as the plot is woven, and there are a few ironic twists and turns. While not as good as her last book, this one was very readable. I would have rewritten the painfully wooden dialogue between Bobby and his sister Max, and the author should note that attorneys have assistants, paralegals, and clerks, but NOT interns, but that is something her editor should have caught. Per the usual, Jackie Collins has delivered a fun romp that happens between New York, LA, and Las Vegas with plenty of delicious scandal along the way. Definitely a fun summer read.