IN PLACE OF LOVE by Aviva Hellman

IN PLACE OF LOVE

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KIRKUS REVIEW

While Jackie O. gets hers from Pierre Rey later in this issue, Helen Gurley B. is forced to appear as Kate Johnson, a workhorse who claws her way to the top, then resolutely holds on to the cold comforts of success ""in place of love."" ""Sorry, Katie,"" goes husband Mike's farewell note to the young climber: ""It's too lonely living with you."" Readers will probably agree with Mike, but Kate briskly rebounds with sheer push, coming up with some sort of best-seller (like Sex and the Single Girl) inspired by the letters sent to the newspaper advice column that she runs. Impressed, publishing giant Jason Reid hires Kate to revive Women Today, his flagging N.Y.-based magazine. Kate feels properly guilty for abandoning her infant daughter to the care of Mother (already hardpressed to look after Kate's invalid sister), but nothing interferes with WORK: not her hairdresser's assiduous servicing; not Jason's cold but flattering attentions or his brother Tarquin's Sunday kind of love; not even the harrowing spectacle of watching a well-liked employee's life self-destruct. Kate never skips a beat until she tangles with Chuck Delaney, ""enfant terrible of the motion picture colony,"" disappointing in bed but past master at keeping Kate guessing. And even Chuck is chucked, since ""Chuck was a phase, whereas Women Today was her life."" Hellman is a former Cosmopolitan publicity director, and there are obvious clefs galore (Chuck does a notorious nude centerfold just like Butt R.). But neither Kate, her success, nor her magazine are textured with enough detail or piquant insight to raise this above sentimentalized gossip.

Pub Date: Jan. 19th, 1977
Publisher: Putnam