Kirkus Star


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This is a honey, as good entertainment as anything Edna Ferber has done, if, perhaps, not so important as some of her books from the angle of Americana. Well timed, to catch that market that wants to be amused and not harrowed, that wants ""escape reading"" properly tagged with the name of an author who must be read. The title is a play on words, to be interpreted either as a period piece de luxe, with the setting shifting from New Orleans to flarstogs when that Sp was at its height; or as romance with a background of the battle over the trunk line from Albany to Binghampton. The story revolves around the machinations of an ambitious young adventuress, newly come from France and determined to win the wealth and security that had been denied her mother, who was mistress to one of New Orleans inner circle, and who was forced to leave the city of her love, because of the scandal of his violent death. To this city, to her mother's home, comes Cilo with her Negro attendant and the grotesque dwarf, ""Cupide"". And there, on the moment of her coming, she encounters the handsome Texan, and immediately annexes him to her purpose -- though on neither side was the intention that the annexation become permanent. It took the near success of her glorified blackmail scheme, first in New Orleans, later in Saratoga, to bring them both to the realization that their bond was too deep for casual breaking. A colorful and dramatic and original story, -- romance and adventure and authentic trappings, well blended. Probably some of the ultra-conservatives will find that it skirts the edge of immorality too lightly. But for the most part, readers will take that in their stride.

Pub Date: Nov. 3rd, 1941
Publisher: Doubleday, Doran