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Nineteen-year-old Marie Rastrelli did not believe in true love. Large, dark, brilliantly sarcastic, fiercely independent and undeniably homely, neither motherhood nor a family had ever been in Marie’s plans. She wanted to be a dentist. Balding, bespectacled and even homelier than Marie, eighteen-year-old Sandy Dupee not only believed in true love, he knew it for a fact. He fell in love with Marie at first sight.
In order to marry Marie, Sandy was required to swear off romantic love forever. It was a tough swear for a hearts and flowers kid; Sandy did it for their unborn child. The strain was tremendous but for ten rocky years, through college, careers, an extramarital affair and three more unplanned pregnancies, Sandy managed to stifle his declarations of undying love…
…Until one wintry morning when he snapped.
Maybe it was his parents’ harping, maybe it was his younger brother’s happiness in his off–the-wall marriage, maybe it was watching Tori, his ex-mistress, find true love; whatever it was, Sandy snapped, and snapped publicly. On Christmas day, at a family house party, Sandy and Marie armed themselves – she with a revolver, he with a violin – and hashed things out on an icy rooftop.

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