Only Yesterday

Syrell Rogovin Leahy, Author Putnam Publishing Group $19.95 (303p) ISBN 978-0-399-13438-8
A woman's search for two men, one of whom she loved and lost two decades earlier, is the theme of Leahy's lightweight but moving novel. During the 1960s, Fulbright scholar Lee Stein researched folklore in Germany, where she lived with the hospitable Biehl family and had a passionate affair with American teacher Richard Singer--a relationship that ended miserably when Singer's wife arrived unannounced from Boston. Lee also befriended Frau Mock, who had hidden a Jewish child, Simon Mandelbaum, during the Nazi era. Simon's relatives from Brooklyn retrieved him after the war, leaving Frau Mock desolate. Lee promised to locate Simon for her, but the obstacles proved too daunting. These bittersweet memories inundate Lee upon her return to Germany in the '80s. Determined to find Rich and Simon, she embarks on a quest that will ultimately bring joy and pain to them all. Although her prose is less than stylish, Leahy ( Love Affair ) convincingly describes emotional bonds that withstand time, tragedy and geographical distance. A too-pat conclusion is disappointing, however. (May)
Reviewed on: 04/30/1989
Release date: 05/01/1989
Mass Market Paperbound - 978-1-55817-410-8
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