As this provocative novel opens, British teenager Olivia's divorced mother takes in "boarder" Nick. Unlike Olivia's professorial father, Nick is a lewd bloke who favors alcohol, cigarettes, and titillating conversation. Already feeling unloved by her distracted parents, Olivia is further disconnected now that Nick occupies her mother's bedroom. Then the randy photographer seduces the 15-year-old virgin, and Olivia's feelings for Nick turn from disgust to obsession. In the hands of a less capable writer, the steamy plot involving an adult male (who eventually becomes Olivia's stepfather) and a 15-year-old could read like soft-core kiddie porn, but first-novelist Inglis goes beyond the love scenes to forge a compelling albeit disturbing plot, with misguided Olivia as the sympathetic central character searching for adult love. Despite its disappointing, open-ended conclusion, this is a surefire page-turner, a perfect summer read.