Caresse

Joyce Wilson, Author St. Martin's Press $0 (362p) ISBN 978-0-312-01011-9
In this dramatic, though formulaic romance novel, Wilson portrays the metamorphosis of Leonie de Byron, whose experiences transform her from an impetuous teenager into a courageous woman. Following World War I, young Midwesterner Zoe journeyed to Paris, where she fell in love with aristocratic Paul de Byron, but the lovers were thwarted by Paul's formidable aunt Berthe. Pregnant with Paul's child, Zoe was sent back to America with a financial settlement, which will be revoked if either Zoe or the childof whom Paul knows nothingreturn to France. Seventeen years later, Zoe and her daughter, Leonie, live comfortably in New York. Desperate to establish contact with Paul despite Zoe's opposition, Leonie steals away to the de Byron estate near the Pyrenees. There she meets her half-sister, Mireille, and Paul, an outwardly reserved man who quickly comes to love his newly discovered daughter. Zoe establishes an exclusive Parisian cosmetics firm called Caresse, which prospers until Hitler's invasion of France. Displaying great valor, Leonie joins the French Resistance, while her avowed enemy, Mireille's vicious maternal grandfather, schemes to have her captured by the Germans. Wilson effectively contrasts the French countryside's pristine beauty with Leonie's harrowing maturation and Nazi barbarism. (March)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1987
Release date: 01/01/1987
Mass Market Paperbound - 368 pages - 978-0-8439-2880-8
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