The Perils of Praline – Marshall Thornton (MLR Press)

Buy it now direct from MLR Press or from our Amazon.com store – The Perils of Praline
 

Despite its title, this is not a post-holiday diet/workout
book. It’s not even a heart-smart warning against the evils of Paula Deen
cuisine. Instead, The Perils of Praline is a short, sweet, sexy satire
by Marshall Thornton that will have you smiling even in your worst moods.

Peter “Praline” Palmetier is a young man who moves from
Lumpkinville, Georgia to Hollywood in search of his lifelong love, Dave
G—better known as Contestant Number Five on the reality TV show, “House Bound.”
Praline, of course, has not yet met Dave G, but that’s a mere formality. He
comes out to his pot-dealing mother, packs his “Eat a Peach” t-shirt and sets
out for the big city, where he finds adventure, sex, danger, sex, love and more
sex.

Thornton has his tongue firmly planted in his cheek and his
finger on the pop culture pulse. The targets he skewers are easy but well worth
his attention—the closeted anchorman from Box News in particular—and he never
lets the action flag. His Palmetier is a cute, innocent sap just savvy enough
to be interesting, and his humor springs from situation and character, never
stooping to the cheap laugh … most of the time. But I mean that in the nicest
way.

There is even a love story here between Praline and his
by-default-roommate Jason, who sticks by Praline through jealous boyfriends,
internet infamy, unwitting prostitution and a casting couch session with the
aforementioned Dave G. When their rocky road brings them together at the
end—which you knew it would—it gives Praline’s trials and tribulations a
substance they otherwise wouldn’t have had. The Perils of Praline is a
light, buttery read that leaves no sugary aftertaste.

Just the thing to whet your appetite for the challenges of
the New Year.  

Reviewed by Jerry Wheeler

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