Written by Carolina Garcia-Aguilera on . Posted in

MAGNOLIA (B&B Press; November 2012), Garcia-Aguilera’s new novel, is a clever, witty and engaging story where two great American pastimes — sex and sports — come together. The reader will follow the story of Magnolia Larson, a beautiful, twenty-two year old woman from a conservative, Catholic Minneapolis family, as she transforms herself into a kind of “sports geisha,” a high priced hooker for elite athletes. An irresistible page-turner, MAGNOLIA is a sensual smorgasbord of racy encounters, playful fantasy and everything in between.

The novel begins in Miami with Magnolia sitting on a barstool, alone, nursing a broken heart, broke, and with no immediate prospects. Unless her situation quickly improves, she will have to admit defeat and head home to Minneapolis, an option she can barely contemplate. Everything changes when an attractive, impeccably groomed woman sits next to her and introduces herself as a sports agent.  The agent makes a unique business proposition, one that will allow Magnolia to remain in Miami and earn a great deal of money: become a “sports geisha” to a select group of elite athletes, but, she warns Magnolia that she will have to “train” very hard to be successful.  Magnolia has to learn Spanish as quite a few of the clients are Latino, study with a sports psychologist so she can relate to the pressures unique to elite athletes, transform her body into the kind of condition required to carry out the physical demands that will be made of it, spend time with a stylist who will teach her how to dress for the encounters, and meticulously care for her appearance.

Once Magnolia finishes training, the story evolves into her encounters with clients, steamy trysts in which she satisfies the athletes’ physical needs and desires. Among these are a world-class sailor whose wife literally jumped ship for another woman, knocking the wind out of his sails; a heavyweight boxer who must be cured of his addiction to ring girls, a distraction that threatens to derail his career; a superstar tennis player who seems only to be able to relax on the court; a celebrated quarterback who cannot perform sexually; and an accident prone, risk taking snowboarder. Magnolia, after studying her clients’ psyches, tailors her approach to each one, and uses whatever is necessary to satisfy their physical and emotional needs, including using props from each sport and having encounters in the venues where the athletes compete (Marlins Stadium, Sun Life Stadium; Jai-alai Fronton).

For the close to two years that she has been working as a sports geisha, Magnolia leads a luxurious existence and makes more money than she ever could imagine. Despite this and the seductive excitement of meeting such unique people, Magnolia is conflicted.  Her guilt at hiding the truth about her life in Miami from her family is consuming her.  She has a real need to connect once again with normal people, have a boyfriend who does not pay her for her company, hang out with girlfriends, and have a dog. Mostly, though, she is tired of living a lie.

Readers will delight in witnessing Magnolia’s experiences, meeting the book’s colorful cast of characters, and ultimately learning whether Magnolia will choose to continue her life as a sport geisha or sacrifice it all for a more normal existence.