In this collection, Norman discloses a unique talent for capturing the essence of ordinary people, the fingerprint swirl that makes each of us distinctive. In the title story, a careless man who is booted out of the RCAF for having stupidly caused a training plane to crash falls in love with a woman at a kissing booth who refuses to kiss him when he identifies himself. His unrequited passion motivates him for the rest of his life. ``Whatever Lola Wants'' is about Harry, an uprooted sound engineer, who presently runs a drive-in movie in Vermont. His wife Lola, a one-time bit player, wants to see the movie she once made in Hollywood. Harry gets a copy, and though it is mid-winter and snowing, runs it for Lola's birthday. In this story, as in others, Norman shows us the small victories that may be snatched from defeat. The author's first novel, The Northern Lights, was nominated for a National Book Award.-- Marcia Tager, Tenafly, N.J.