Steel, a specialist in romance con tremulo, again expertly sounds the throbs and flutings of that genre, even though the subject here is generally considered too severe for chaise longue entertainment--the plight of a German victim of the Nazis and her fight for survival. Adriana's lovely mother commits suicide after being beaten by police (along with her Jewish lover) and disgracing the family name. So Adriana's kind father Walmar is all too aware of the Nazi menace, and, as war approaches, he spirits Adriana's brother Gerhard out of Germany to avoid the draft, but--because of a servant's treachery--Walmar never manges to return to rescue Adriana too. So she is taken prisoner, tortured, and finally rescued by Manfred von Tripp, an officer. They fall in love and marry, but Manfred is killed. Adriana, grieving, follows Manfred's instructions, escapes to France, and eventually reaches N.Y., where she is taken into the Lieberman family. The Liebermans assume she's Jewish, of course, and son Paul (who drives a ""Cadillac roadster!"") proposes. Adriana accepts, though pregnant by the late Manfred, and when both of her secrets come out--a month after baby Noel is born--she's out on her ear with baby, soon divorced. The action then jumps ahead 25 years--to Noel's graduation from Harvard Law. And who is Noel's beloved? Tamara Lieberman! But young love wins over old hatreds, and finally there's a teary reunion too for Adriana and missing brother Gerhard: he's now a gallery owner in France who, by chance, sees the family ring on the finger of Tamara. . . . A skillful, agreeable hardcover performance by a big seller of paperback originals--heavy on the palpitations, but sheer chiffon all the way, in a classic cut.