THE OTHER DAVID by Carolyn Coker


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Andrea Perkins, on leave from Harvard to be an assistant curator at Florence's Galleria dell'Accademia, receives a gift for the museum from a priest--an old family heirloom that turns out to be. . . the ""other David"": Michelangelo's easel-portrait, lost for centuries! Is it really, absolutely authentic? So it seems. Still, to be entirely sure, Andrea and curator Vittorio ask Texas super-collector Clint McCauley to send over his state-of-the-art Mc36 computer for further tests of the painting--even though Andrea would rather forget married Clint, with whom she had a very brief affair. Soon, then, Clint and the Mc36 arrive at his nearby villa. But then the ""David"" is stolen by thugs; Andrea's kidnapped but escapes; the painting is recovered--but turns out to be a fake substitute! Where is the real ""David""--and who is behind the mayhem? Well, as the reader knows, and as Andrea soon learns, her irresistible lover Clint (using his surly nephew as hit-man) is the villain--""an Ubermensch whose wealth allowed him to live above the law. . . ."" And when Andrea refuses to go along with Clint's seductive power-plays, she must deal with assorted assaults and further mixups with fake ""David"" canvases--all of which culminate in a standard chase-finale at the museum. Rickety plotting, with implausible motivations for heroine Andrea (who winds up with suitor #2, a suave cop)--but, thanks to the solidly detailed Florence/museum atmosphere (and a minimum of gush), this is a slight cut above shlock romantic-suspense.

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1984
Publisher: Dodd, Mead