Lovers and Cohorts

Herbert Gold, Author, Herbert Gold, Other Dutton Books $17.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-917657-75-7
Many of these 27 stories by the author of Fathers and Love and Like are so slight and self-indulgent that they fail to sustain interest. They concern a writer who comes from Cleveland, lives in California (as does the author) and describes in excruciating detail his relationships with his wives, girlfriends and family members. Only a few tales are vintage Gold. In one of them, ""A Ninety-Six-Year-Old Big Sister,'' the narrator's Aunt Anna refuses to allow her already aging children to cook or clean for her and maintains that she doesn't even feel 95 yet; how can she be 96? In ``Cohorts,'' a father, half-blind, half-deaf, unable to control his bodily functions, goes with his sons to a neighborhood delicatessen, where he meets some cronies who greet him delightedly. With equanimity he responds, ``Fine, fine,'' but at home, asked who they were, shakes his dazed head. ``Ti-Moune'' introduces Monique, an 11-year-old Haitian, responsibly adult, whose mother is prepared to sell her to a family of Americans returning home. It is unfortunate that perceptive, touching stories like these are subsumed by so many trifling ones. (April 15)
Reviewed on: 04/01/1986
Release date: 04/01/1986
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