This is my second-annual reading through the NPR Summer Reading list. I requested as many of the books as are available at my local library, and as they come to me I'm reading as many as I can. Due to graduate school obligations, I am limiting myself to selections that are less than 300 pages.
I just finished reading Laura Rider's Masterpiece by Jane Hamilton. The main character, Laura is married to Charlie, and through the years the spark has gone out of their marriage. In a strange turn of events and a quest to become a writer, Laura helps Charlie maintain an email love-affair with a local radio celebrity. As the email affair becomes more than electronic, a truly bizarre love-triangle ensues. I found it a fairly quick read, humorous and intelligent, and "provocative" without being "smutty." (You may define smutty differently than I do, so if you tend to avoid sexual content, this is probably not the book for you.) The end left me a little puzzled, though; I really had some difficulty determining who were the bad guys and who were the good guys, but I suspect that may have been the author's point.
I liked this one. If you need a book for the beach or the pool that is a little poignant, a little funny and a little sexy, you ought to check this one out.