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    INSATIABLE by Marne Davis Kellogg

    Doubleday, February 2001

    Nigel Weatherby-Smythe serves as butler to Jacqueline du Fidelio, a famous portrait painter with an insatiable need for money. Nigel follows Jacqueline from a Atlantic yacht cruise to a New York art reception, to an Aspen ski outing, to the mountains of Nepal--and both seem followed by art theft, deception, danger, and murder.

    Jacqueline is surrounded by dangerous men: her late mother's lover who believes he 'ownes' Jacqueline now; an art dealer whom the IRS believes is also an international art thief, and a damaged millionaire who thinks nothing of unloading his revolvers into anything that moves. Even surviving seems a challenge--a challenge not met by many Nigel and Jacqueline come in contact with. When the IRS comes after Jacqueline for over a million dollars in back taxes and penalties, disaster seems very near.

    Narrated in first person from Nigel's point of view, INSATIABLE provides strong insights into Nigel himself, but paints the other characters as generally flat (possibly because of Nigel's self-centered world-view). Despite the deaths that seem to follow him, Nigel never dreams that he and his 'Madam' might be the targets of murder. Instead, he schemes to move Jacqueline from one relationship to the next, each one more doomed than the one before. Jacqueline herself is the great mystery of the novel. With only Nigel's soft-focus view of her, it is difficult to determine whether she is the victim, or somehow the victimizer of those around her.

    Two Stars

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