MISSED TRAINS by Arthur Cavanaugh


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A post-WW II love story that lapses into smock after a promising beginning: affecting portraits of two grieving children deserted, in different ways, by adored fathers. Child-actor Christopher grows up drifting, unconsciously looking everywhere for his suicide father, Hungry little Maggie lost her father too--he just disappeared one day, perhaps inspired by the visions of glamour offered by the Silver Chief super-train (Joan Crawford aboard) that passed through their dusty-Depression Kansas town. Good, strong stuff. But once these two tight-lipped, suffering misfits grow up--Maggie goes through an abortion and a suicide attempt--they're not half as interesting as they were as kids. Christopher is now a stage manager, Maggie's a rising actress--and they meet during a play rehearsal in Manhattan. Much corny dialogue ensues, as almost immediately there is that ""recognition"" flashed between ""outcasts."" Gradually the two uncover each other's secret agonies, at last marriage is planned, but on the wedding day--paging Erich Segal!--Maggie is killed in a street accident. The terminal mawkishness aside, however, this sentimental journey from the author of Leaving Home (1971) may engage the older Love Story contingent with its nostalgic train rides and late-Forties period touches.

Pub Date: April 1st, 1979
Publisher: Simon & Schuster