Something about Cecily
The heroine of this tale is Cecy Scatterton – is that subtle enough for you? This loveable ditz is broke, unemployed on the verge of homelessness. When she takes herself to the ER after a bump on the head. she (literally) bumps into Chas Buchannan. He offers to let her temp for his vacationing secretary in exchange for paying for her hospital bill. Why this man has never heard of a temp agency I can’t tell you.
Cecy tries to hide her dire straits from Chas but it soon becomes evident to him that she needs more then a $7.00 an hour paycheck. He offers to let her move in temporarily into his place. Previously they had been intimate, but once Cecy moves in Chas determines that this has to stop. This leads to tedious and bizarre sequences of longing. In of them, Chas imagines himself in a miniature submarine, exploring Cecy’s body a la Jacques Cousteau. This is original but never quite pushes from odd to erotic.
Why are Cecy and Chas destined for each other? Because he needs someone to take the starch out of his shirt and she needs someone to keep her from doing harm to herself or others. That’s it, that and the physical part, which seems rushed and clinical. There is nothing to separate Cecy and Chas from the characters that have come before. In fact, their stereotypical foibles are exploited tirelessly. She’s so ditzy that she drops and acrylic nail in her spaghettios and calls poison control. He’s so cheap that he only shops on Triple Coupon Day and demands Cecy give up little luxuries like fashion magazines. The other reason they belong together is that Chas had an eccentric grandmother. Apparently Cecy and the deceased are soulmates and she sees her in dreams, and gets advice on how to win Chas over.
The plot centers around how these two resolve their differences. Chas still has a bad taste in his mouth from his first marriage. Cecy believes Chas’s attentions are all out of pity. They also fight a lot when they aren’t panting all over each other.
The one thing I liked about the book was Barney, Cecy’s cat. I thought he had more personality then the human characters and I was concerned when he became ill near the end. Maybe because he wasn’t trying so hard to fit into a particular stereotype, and I didn’t feel manipulated into liking him, it just happened. If Something About Cecily had been at all subtle and thought out, I might have felt the same way about it’s human characters.