MIRROR IMAGE by Danielle Steel


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Lg. Prt. 0-385-33331-5 With 370 million books in print, Steel’s 45th novel arrives even while her last four titles wait like gold bricks in Dell’s paperback inventory. Mirror Image tells of Olivia and Victoria Henderson, identical twins born in 1893, such close look-alikes that even their bewildered, widower father can’t tell them apart—an unlikelihood one must just accept. Toss out grammar as well; the first paragraph, describing Edward Henderson’s home and family, tells us that “Nestled as they were in Croton-on-Hudson . . . his attorneys came to see him fairly often.” But Steel’s golden drone captures readers and laughs at criticism. The story here opens with the twins at age 20, Olivia caring for the house while Victoria flies about, rides horses, smokes boldly, drives cars, and stumps for women’s suffrage. Olivia carries herself like the shy young spinster-heiress of Washington Square; Victoria goes out and gets pregnant by married Toby Whitticomb, then has an abortion. Meanwhile, among the guests at the Hendersons— is widower lawyer Charles Dawson, whose wife went down on the Titanic. Olivia feels a deep attachment for him, but Edward Henderson chooses Charles to marry Victoria and save her reputation. Even so, married Victoria still carries the torch for that bastard Toby, while Charles can’t forget his first wife. As for Olivia, whom Charles can’t tell from Victoria, well, if you can’t guess what happens next you haven’t been alive for a very long time. ClichÇ follows ever bolder clichÇ as the Steel style grinds out its mellow surprises for the blissfully half-asleep.

Pub Date: Nov. 3rd, 1998
ISBN: 0-385-31509-0
Page count: 432pp
Publisher: Delacorte
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 15th, 1998


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