Dominant Blonde

Dominant Blonde

4.3 12
by Alisa Kwitney

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Blond and a size ten for the first time in her life, Lydia may actually have gotten this love thing right this time. Or not. After a run of bad career and dating decisions, Lydia Gold is ready for a vacation from her life. So what if the Caribbean resort's a little shabby and the boyfriend's not the lover of her dreams. This time around, Lydia's experiencing


Blond and a size ten for the first time in her life, Lydia may actually have gotten this love thing right this time. Or not. After a run of bad career and dating decisions, Lydia Gold is ready for a vacation from her life. So what if the Caribbean resort's a little shabby and the boyfriend's not the lover of her dreams. This time around, Lydia's experiencing what it's like to have someone madly in love with her.

But when Abe doesn't return from a scuba dive, Lydia discovers some decidedly unsavory facts. Abe has embezzled three million dollars of her family's money. And he may not be as dead as she's beginning to wish he were.

Lydia's best chance for finding her missing boyfriend is Liam MacNally, a rugged, sexy former NYPD search and rescue diver and reluctant romantic. Liam wants nothing more than to sit on the beach with a Hemingway novel in one hand and a beer in the other.

But sometimes it takes a little danger to bring you to your senses....

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
A decade after the well-received Till the Fat Lady Sings, Alisa Kwitney returns with The Dominant Blonde, an appealing romantic mystery. Lydia Gold is on a tropical vacation with her soon-to-be fianc , Abe. During a diving excursion, Abe goes down and never comes up; then Lydia learns that he had cleaned out her family's savings, to the tune of $3 million. She turns to sexy scuba instructor Liam MacNally to help her track Abe down but they're not the only ones looking for him. This smart, funny caper is much better than its title and cover imply. (June) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Library Journal
Thinking that she's finally gotten things right romantically when her boyfriend of four months takes her to a tiny Caribbean island for a scuba-diving vacation, New Yorker Lydia Gold ends up on an emotional roller coaster when her intended apparently drowns, her family's business account simultaneously turns up $3 million short, and her stint in a recompression chamber with the sexy diving instructor has unexpectedly romantic results. A jigsaw puzzle plot that comes together in bits and pieces combines with a pair of likable protagonists and a host of quirky secondary characters to produce a lively, darkly humorous, occasionally violent romp that is more fiction than romance. Nevertheless, the skillful handling of the romantic relationship, the main characters' emotional development, and the satisfactory ending will appeal to fans who like their romances laced with satire and a mainstream flair. Kwitney (Till the Fat Lady Sings) lives in New York City. Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
Edition description:
First Edition
Product dimensions:
7.98(w) x 5.28(h) x 0.70(d)

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

Before you trust a man, Lydia's grandmother used to say, you have to know three things: how he spends his money, how he holds his drink, and how he loses his temper.

Despite this advice, Lydia had gone on dating one extravagant drunken disaster after another. But now, one year after her grandmother's demise, Lydia knew she had found a man of whom her nana would have approved.

A beer or two only added to his genial good mood.

He was generous to a fault.

In four months, she had never once seen him get mad.

And, as an added bonus, Abe Bohemius was the first man who had ever suggested that she go on vacation with him and not broken up with her two days before the date on the nonrefundable tickets.

This time, Lydia thought, I just might've gotten it right.

Resting her luggage at her feet, Lydia paused to savor the sea-salt, flower-musked breeze. Back in New York City, the gray-faced hordes were tunneling through the subways on their way home from work. Here, sky met sea in an expansive wash of vivid blue.

Lydia turned as the sun shifted and a shadow fell across her face. Looking up, she saw that she was standing in the shade of a great, dark bird, hunkered in apparent misery atop a flagless pole. With a rusty squawk, the bird launched itself into the air, giving two flaps of its enormous wings before swooping low over the sprawling wood dining hall and veering off toward the treeline. A few tourists, eating watery fish stew out on the verandah, put down their spoons andpointed.

“Hey,” Abe called over his shoulder. “How you doing back there?”

Lydia pressed her hands into the small of her back and took a deep breath of heavily vegetated humidity. “Just a little rest break.”

Abe turned, shading his eyes with his hand as he inspected their surroundings. There were damp patches under his blue silk shirt. “So what do you think, Lyd? This paradise or what?”

“Or what.” Lydia smiled. Abe smiled back in perfect misunderstanding.

The brochures for Neptune's Rest had promised a resort of sugar-white beaches and jewel-like waters of incredible brightness and clarity, as well as gardens as fragrant and lush as bridal bouquets, and aggressively tame parrots who would eat the mango right out of your hand. The photographs and text had also implied, but not stated, that you and your lover would be having some wild monkey sex in a hammock.

What the brochure's idyllic pictures and lyrical descriptions had concealed was the odd, ramshackle aspect of the place, and the vague air of neglect and sadness that afflicted everything from the palm trees, which listed at acute angles to the ground, to the male-pattern baldness of the thatch-roofed huts.

“You okay? Still need to take a breather?” Abe smiled at her, all dark eyes and white teeth.

“No, no, I'm okay. It isn't far, is it?”

“Nah. We're in cabin D-10. This here's the B line of cabins, so we're probably just over there somewheres. You ready?”

Following Abe's sweaty back, Lydia allowed the resort some leeway. After all, she and Abe did not exactly resemble the sleekly oiled models who had draped provocatively over each other in the brochure's various settings. Abe was handsome, but in a swarthy, furry, barrel-chested fashion. She, despite being a blonde and a size ten for the first time in her life, had a face that showed every line from thirty-one years of concerted worrying.

Abe stopped to inspect a small sign, half-hidden behind a tiki torch. “Damn. This says G line. We must've gone too far.”

“Let's ask someone.”

“Lydia, I got a map. You don't need to--”

“Excuse me.” Lydia spotted an islander, dressed in the resort's navy blue uniform, walking swiftly along another path. “Excuse me,” she called. “Hello?” The man kept walking.

“Yo! Hey!” Abe whistled loudly.

The young man, who had a round, almost babyish face and sleepy eyes, ambled over. “I didn't realize you were calling me.”

“We can't figure out where's our cabin.” Abe showed him their keys.“That way, sir. By that palm tree over there.”

“Great. Thanks.” Abe stuffed a dollar bill into the man's front pocket. The young man looked down at it.

“Thanks, but tips are not--”

“What's your name, kid?”


“Thomas, you look in on us in half an hour or so, I got some diving questions for you.”

Thomas looked uncomfortable. “I'm afraid I'm not really the most expert--”

“Don't worry, I'm an old hand. Fact is, I don't really want a site crowded with other tourists. You can show me some of the spots where the locals dive, right? When you're done with whatever it is you're doing. Here, take this, we can negotiate a sum when you drop by, okay?” Abe patted another, larger bill into the young man's pocket. Lydia, looking away from Thomas's shuttered expression, saw that the strange bird was still circling far overhead.

“That isn't a parrot, is it? What kind of bird is that?”

“That bird? I don't know the name in English, ma'am.”

Lydia peered at the sky. “It almost looks like a vulture.”

“Ah, yes. ‘Vulture.' I believe that is the word. Excuse me?” Thomas smiled, then loped swiftly away. Lydia, suddenly recalling that the island of Epiphany didn't have any native languages other than English, snorted with laughter.

Abe hefted his suitcase up. “Something funny?”

“Just happy, I guess.” Lydia looked at her bag, bent from the knees, and hauled it into her arms.

Abe looked at Lydia for a long moment, as if bringing her into focus. “You want me to take your...”

The Dominant Blonde. Copyright © by Alisa Kwitney. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

Meet the Author

Alisa Kwitney is the author of the critically acclaimed novels Does She or Doesn't She?, The Dominant Blonde, and Till the Fat Lady Sings. Alisa has an MFA in fiction from Columbia University and countless comic books from her years as an editor for Vertigo/DC Comics. She lives with her husband and two children in New York City.

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Dominant Blonde 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 13 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I was very disappointed with this book. I bought it, because of all the good reviews on this website. So many aspects of the book were unrealistic/hard to believe. Lydia and Liam are constantly fighting and then making up with vicious sex. No substance to this book. Very predictable.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is one of those rare novels that will appeal to both teenagers and adult women. Lydia is ME. I completely related to all of her problems and found myself nodding my head as I read. I simply could not put this down.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was a great book and I gave it 5 stars for that reason! I hope they make a second one, the main charactor was Lydia, she goes on vacation with her boyfriend that she can 'supposedly' trust but finds out he is using her for her money! He dies in a scuba diving accident (not really he fakes it), and Lydia is all shooken up not knowing whether to cry or go and have a good time! She meats a man named Liam, she likes him but realizes hes not her type at all, everything comes back and stabs her in the back, Lydia is now so scared on what to do so she goes back to New York, a month later Liam shows up, SURPRISE LYDIA!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Mariska Hargitay, who plays Detective Olivia Benson on Law & Order: SVU, is the narrator in this audio book. Mariska captures the flavor and depth of each character as she brings to life their voices, minds and hearts. She displays an uncanny sense of language by using several accents (British, Caribbean island flair, Irish) and by impersonating female and MALE voices. She brings this wonderfully playful and romantic story to life through your ears, in turn making the characters three dimensional with your eyes closed. I applaud her work on this audio book and would recommend she continue as narrator, detective and compassionate crusader in assisting assault/rape victims and abused women and children in America (Safe Horizon, NOFAS- Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, SAVI, The Rape Treatment Center and RAINN).
Guest More than 1 year ago
Not at all what I was expecting¿but still a pretty good book. I liked that the book was suspenseful but some parts just lacked reasoning and made me think ¿I don¿t get this, why are they doing that?¿ Most of the characters annoyed me but Liam made the book worth reading. I think I¿m just too young to really understand or appreciate this book, but I would recommend it to anyone who has done the dating thing for years, because those are the ones who would enjoy it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I thought that this book was great. It was suspenseful but still had a story. There were turns that you never saw coming and had me wondering what would happen.
Guest More than 1 year ago
What better setting for the perfect beach listen than a small Caribbean island? Setting plot and reading by Mariska Hargitay are all tops in this sometimes funny, sometimes suspenseful romantic romp. Ever have a time when you think everything's going perfectly in your life? Lydia Gold is enjoying that thought - she's now blonde, a size ten, and after a series of mishaps of the heart she's off to a small Caribbean island with Abe who shows all signs of being absolutely bonkers about her. Scuba diving isn't exactly Lydia's forte'. Evidently, it isn't Abe's either because he never returns from his dive. What also shows no signs of returning is the 3 million he embezzled from her family. Lydia seeks help from Liam, a former NYPD search and rescue diver who now prefers to spend his time relaxing on the beach. She not only finds what she sought but much, much more: danger, a new romance, and many surprises. 'The Dominant Blonde' is sassy, sexy, and suspenseful.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was given to me in a Valentine's gift, and totally not what I was expecting at all! It was suspenseful, with some really hot romance scenes... perfect readng for the girl that needs a little fluff in her life!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is the best romance I have ever read. Simple and carefree, turns and twists you will never see coming. Liam and Lydia are the couple you root for on your favorite soap.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Fun, fluff book! I was done in 2 days! actually made me go the gym, so I could read on the treadmill. A little less than realistic, characters were great, made me want to move to a tropical island.
Guest More than 1 year ago
you will read this book from beginning to end. it gets so intense you widh it was your life, and with the help of the good writing of this book you catch yourself seeing the images of the book in your head. it is such a great book that youll read it over and over
Guest More than 1 year ago
I read this book in one day, I just could not put it down. Had to know what was happening next. Very steamy in some areas and kind of suspenceful in others. Recommend any one who has time. Not the deepest, but very good!!