From the Point

Don J. Snyder, Author Franklin Watts $0 (306p) ISBN 978-0-531-15081-8
Pining the loss of the present even before it becomes past can develop into a lifetime preoccupation, and in this novel by the author of A Soldier's Disgrace, three children of the '60s spend so much time on melancholy self-examination that, in a sense, they waste away their lives. Casey and Jack grow up together in a New England town. Casey's handsome father is so much grander than her mother that the woman fades mysteriously until she is utterly feeble. Meanwhile, one night her father comes to Casey's bedroom and abuses her. When at last he abandons the family, Casey joins Jack in Boston, where he attends Harvard in the days of the antiwar protests. They are made a threesome by dynamic Ross, who takes them to a cottage on Frenchman Bay in Maine, where they contemplate their lives, soon to be changed by the war and the gradual evolution of society from the '60s through the '80s. Snyder is consistently wistful as he noticeably and, at times, annoyingly attempts to charge his novel with poignancy. His imagery is often effective, however, as when, after many years, Casey visits her father, now dying, and ties sheets across his four-poster as if it were a sailboat and turns it toward the sea. Unfortunately, this everpresent air of introspection into the big questions of life teeters too frequently on the edge of melodrama. (April)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1988
Release date: 01/01/1988
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