Tommy Was Here

Simon Corrigan, Author Andre Deutsch $22.95 (186p) ISBN 978-0-233-98784-2
In this promising first novel, Imogen Holm, the fiercely devoted mother of four musicians, leaves London for Paris in a desperate search for her son Tommy, a piano student who has dropped out of a French conservatory and disappeared. Imogen's romantic image of Paris is shattered when she canvases her son's seedy neighborhood and meets his associates, including his bitter ex-girlfriend Veronique, male prostitute Pierre and renowned pianist Paul Delamarche, Tommy's bisexual former music teacher--and apparent lover. Disgusted by Paul's ``sick passion'' for the son she hardly knows, Imogen enters a netherworld of blackmail and scandal and is seduced twice by Pierre in the novel's most unconvincing scenes. Frustratingly, the reader never gets to know Tommy except through flashbacks, hearsay and the pat psychoanalytical opinion (provided almost as an afterthought) that he wanted revenge on his parents. The story's commanding presence is Imogen, stunningly portrayed as a painter who sacrificed her artistic ambitions for the sake of her children and her ailing husband. Corrigan's elegant prose is flecked with irony, wit and astute social observation. (July)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1992
Release date: 01/01/1992
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