Amethyst

Mary-Rose Hayes, Author Dutton Books $18.95 (406p) ISBN 978-0-525-24781-4
Exotic locales, intrigue, passion and an ominous prediction are ingredients in this altogether standard potboiler that spans 20 eventful years in the lives of four female friends. In 1965, Catriona, Gwynneth and Jess are attending an English boarding school when Victoria Raven enters their ranks. Exuding an air of mystery, sophisticated Victoria claims to possess ``second sight'' and she predicts their futures over a Ouija board with the aid of her ``magical'' amethyst ring. Victoria foresees that the four will reunite in 20 years, but ``be one less.'' During those two decades, Catriona discovers that her husband is a homosexual in love with Victoria's manipulative bisexual brother, Tancredi; Gwynneth, who adores Tancredi, becomes a fashion model; artist Jess is romantically linked with an eminent Mexican surgeon; Victoria heads for the world's trouble spots as a journalist. In 1985, Tancredi summons them all to the Ravens' castle in Scotland for the fateful reunion. Hayes ( The Winter Women ) keeps readers plowing along doggedly, then supplies a sordid ending that makes gratuitous, moralistic use of AIDS. All four women survive Victoria's dire prediction, rendering the novel even less satisfying. 150,000 first printing; $150,000 ad/promo. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 10/01/1989
Release date: 10/01/1989
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