Brass Bed

Alexandra Marshall, Author Doubleday Books $16.95 (275p) ISBN 978-0-385-23294-4
One reads this novel, with characters so likeable one can't help caring about them, with an absorption akin to that inspired by a letter from a good friend. In midlife, Nina and Duncan are both, willy-nilly, starting anew: Nina's long-time affair with a married Frenchman was ended by his fatal car crash just before she learned she was pregnant, and she has returned to the U.S. to bear his child; Duncan's 14-year marriage has recently dissolved. When they meetat Boston's French Library where he's on an assignment for the Globe and she's reading Match and nursing her babythey are immediately attracted to each other; with further encounters, each wonders if love might not be possible again. The past can't be erasedDuncan succumbs once to his ex-wife's charms and, even late in the tale, memories of France reduce Nina to tearsbut as their relationship casts new light on what preceded it, the pain of remembering fades. Peripheral figures, including Nina's missionary parents and Mark, the singleminded young photojounalist who works with Duncan, as well as Boston settings and issues, enhance this engaging, sensitively upbeat love story. Marshall wrote Tender Offer. January 3
Reviewed on: 12/02/1985
Release date: 12/01/1985
Paperback - 275 pages - 978-0-452-25934-8
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