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About the Book

About the Book

Finishing Touches

Jesse Holtz and her two best friends, Cecile and Bryn, are practically attached at the hip. Their 10-year friendship—begun in college and still super glue-strong—is maintained by ritualized weekly get-togethers and daily cell phone catch-ups. Until Cecile, the Golden Girl of the trio, dies from injuries sustained in a head-on car crash.

In Finishing Touches Deanna Kizis follows up her brilliantly comic debut novel, How To Meet Cute Boys, with a part bittersweet, part acid funny tale of the intricacies of friendship, grief and getting a life while getting over a tragic event.

Jesse’s not even halfway there. Cecile was everything Jesse wanted to be—a charmer who was bright, beguiling, and movie-star beautiful. Just being able to bask in Cecile’s reflected glory made up for everything Jesse felt she lacked. At least Jesse still has Bryn’s treasured friendship—but even Bryn’s backing comes up short in light of Jesse’s grief, and her discontent with her job at one of L.A’s interior design studios.

Now, nine months after Cecile’s death, Jesse is still in mourning, and in spite of Bryn’s bugging her about dating, she’s not in the mood. Her only solace is in spending time with Zach, Cecile’s still-grieving husband. Zach is a respected food critic, but doesn’t relish sitting alone in a restaurant he’s supposed to review, so Jesse has become his willing dinner companion.

Inevitably, their friendship turns into passion, but it also cools the close ties between Bryn and Jesse. Bryn feels that Jesse has betrayed Cecile’s memory and distances herself from Jesse. Hurt, but savoring Zach’s attention, Jesse guiltily allows the romance to flourish. As time passes, she feels that she’s recovering from Cecile’s death, but Zach’s pain is becoming more intense. In spite of her misgivings, she agrees to spend Thanksgiving weekend with Zach and his family—a disastrous few days that fuels her doubts about a relationship that’s become more co-dependent than caring. Yet, at his urging, she moves in with Zach, only to find that he is still living with Cecile’s belongings. He hasn’t begun to heal, and Jesse realizes neither has she. It’s not easy but Jesse begins to understand the connections between home and hearth, familiarity and grief, and that life, like any good interior, can always use a little rearranging.

Finishing Touches
by Deanna Kizis

  • Publication Date: May 1, 2006
  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
  • ISBN-10: 0446578088
  • ISBN-13: 9780641907180