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'The Regrets' by Amy Bonnaffons gives new meaning to 'ghosting'

Thomas is a certain type of romantically tragic man whose brand of damage attracts sympathetic young women like catnip.

He’s scarred and haunted by an incident from his youth. He’s an art school dropout and occasional substitute keyboardist in a band. Despite always being kind of lousy to women, he’s always lousy with options. He’s a parade’s worth of red flags, distant and unavailable and always on the verge of flickering out of existence.

He’s also dead.

Amy Bonnaffons gives an entirely new meaning to the term “ghosting” with her clever debut novel “The Regrets” (Little, Brown and Company, 304 pp., ★★★ out of four). It’s a high concept she grounds with insightful, sometimes painfully accurate observations about dating, skewering a particular brand of millennial dirtbag boyfriend while tenderly examining the heart of a woman who falls for him.

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