Cover image for Night swimming
Night swimming
Schwarz, Robin.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Warner Books, [2004]

Physical Description:
341 pages ; 24 cm
Format :


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In the bestselling tradition of "Good in Bed," and "She's Come Undone," comes a charming romantic comedy about a woman who flees a life and a body she doesn't want, and finds love and her true self in the process.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

If it looks like a chick, walks like a chick, and talks like a chick, is it chick lit? Not necessarily. All the elements of the typical chick lit novel are here: loveless, lonely heroine; zany, life-changing situations; quirky secondary characters; glamorous setting. But the author has given these elements a gravity not seen in the typical chick lit novel. Charlotte Clapp is dying. With only one year left to live, Charlotte has decided to do just that-- live. On her last day at work she steals $2 million, fakes her suicide, and heads to Los Angeles. Charlotte dubs herself Blossom McBeal (after connecting with the obituary of an 88-year-old rabble rouser), buys an apartment, and finds herself falling in love with the pool boy. The cops back home suspect Charlotte's staged crime scene and start tracking her down. Characters may behave outlandishly but they're realistic. Comic situations are preposterous yet believable. The tone is amusing and earnest. Readers of chick lit who want more substance will find it in this standout first novel. --Kaite Mediatore Copyright 2004 Booklist

Publisher's Weekly Review

An overweight New Hampshire bank employee is misdiagnosed with cancer and given a year to live in this first novel, a giddy, overblown romantic comedy. Wish-fulfillment is on the agenda for the unfortunately named Charlotte Clapp. After her doctor gives her the bad news, she decides to rob the bank where she works and run away to L.A. Miraculously, her daring life change is rewarded by unintentional weight loss-fortunate, because Skip, the pool boy at her luxury apartment complex, is a blonde Adonis (and a former lawyer), and Charlotte (now calling herself Blossom McBeal) plans to sit in a kimono by the pool, hoping desperately that he'll fall for her. Friendship is provided by Charlotte's dog-loving elderly neighbor, Dolly-and Charlotte needs it, because the police are still after her, slowly but surely tracking her to California. Schwarz's novel is as padded as Charlotte's waistline with purple prose ("The perfect silvery notes... hovered like breakable angels over the audience") and hyperbole ("One Krispy Kreme after another, until she resembled a cardboard clown with a ring of white powder around its mouth"). But those willing to read between the book's often-unwieldy lines will be rewarded with soap-operatic satisfactions. Agent, Suzanne Gluck. (June) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

Charlotte Clapp is 34, overweight, lonely, and bored in a small New England town. After learning that she has a year to live, she steals $2 million from the bank where she works, stages her death, and drives to Los Angeles via New Orleans. As "Blossom McBeal," she spends the year swimming at night and working on her "Things To Do Before I Die" list. Two new friends include Skip, the hunky pool guy, and old Dolly Feingold, reminiscent of the wonderful Mrs. Lefkowitz in Jennifer Weiner's In Her Shoes. Blossom/Charlotte is determined to make a difference for others and resolve some regrettable episodes in her own life. Months pass: she's losing weight, but can dying feel this good? Though one wishes a heavy woman could win her man without physical transformation, readers will love Blossom's fantasy year and cheer as newcomer Schwarz wraps this one up. Though not as fine as Weiner's Good in Bed or Wally Lamb's She's Come Undone, this should be popular in public libraries. Rebecca Kelm, Northern Kentucky Univ. Lib., Highland Heights (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.