cover image The Dreyfus Affair: A Love Story

The Dreyfus Affair: A Love Story

Peter Lefcourt. Random House (NY), $20 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-679-40344-9

This seriocomic second novel by the author of The Deal tells the offbeat story of baseball star Randy Dreyfus, whose life--on the surface, at least--seems a winning streak that will never end. His manager tells him, ""You're 28 years old. You got the best swing since Ted Williams. You're the fastest white guy in the league. You've got a nice wife, a family, you're pulling down two point three a year, not to mention the TV and merchandising money."" However, Dreyfus has one big problem--he has fallen in love with D. J., the team's second baseman--as well as a few smaller ones: his wife thinks he's sleeping with another woman, his shrink is driving him crazy and he wants to kill his unruly Dalmatian. When Dreyfus and D. J. are caught in the act under most bizarre circumstances, the political and professional fallout affects the World Series and the White House alike. Lefcourt employs a smoothly smart-alecky tone reminiscent of Dan Jenkins's football fiction, albeit without Jenkins's expert handling of the locker-room milieu. The tone grates after a while, but the novel is not without moments of genuine wit. Although the finale is more whimper than bang, the book's zany charm has a cumulative impact.