A Lasting Fire

Beverly Byrne, Author Fanfare $4.99 (0p) ISBN 978-0-553-28815-5
This engaging historical novel, the first in a projected trilogy, includes some classic elements of a panoramic saga: marauding brigands, illegitimate noblemen, buried treasure, bull-fighting, the Plague, a kidnapping, explicit atrocities, fanatically loyal servants, baronial feasts, sex both kinky and passionately ideal, and a historical grounding that allows the author to drop such names as Napoleon and the Duke of Wellington. Driven by the Spanish Inquisition to deny their Jewish heritage, ensuing generations of the once-prominent Mendoza family have seesawed from wealth to poverty. The Mendozas are linked through two of their sons to Sophie Valon, a strong-willed woman raised by gypsies. Sophie gives birth to a Mendoza heir and presides over the restoration of the family fortune. Though her plot is somewhat cliched, the author of The Morgan Women has twisted a kaleidoscope containing the tried and the trite, and come up with a pleasingly varied narrative. Beautiful, brilliant, supernaturally talented and sexy Sophie is a memorable heroine. (This book was originally titled Gitana by Clare Martin.) (July)
Reviewed on: 06/03/1991
Release date: 06/01/1991
Hardcover - 432 pages - 978-0-7278-4336-4
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