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Caroline Winthrop, Author St. Martin's Press $18.95 (356p) ISBN 978-0-312-03729-1
This overhyped brew of intrigue and betrayal on the diplomatic circuit features a cast of characters that rival one another in shrill, selfish bitchery and a plot that packs no punch until midway through the novel. It's no wonder that the author, an established writer of women's fiction, chose to publish under a pseudonym. The death of loved ones sends Judith Marlowe off the rails. Her weak, besotted stepbrother Kenny, a minor diplomat, fishes her out of the bottle, marries her and sweeps her off to Poland. Bored, she launches an affair with Dmitrov, a KGB man whose task is to persuade her to visit her father, Phillip, a homosexual traitor who defected to Moscow years ago to the humiliation of his controlling, formidably perfect wife, who is now married to the secretary of state. Phillip has a secret that sends everyone scrambling, but a handful of vivid action scenes and well-sketched glimpses of Russian life don't make up for an overwrought style and stilted dialogue, or for repeated rapes apparently intended to pass as passion. 100,000 first printing; $100,000 ad/promo. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1990
Release date: 01/01/1990
Mass Market Paperbound - 978-0-312-92430-0
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