INTIMATE TERMS by Elaine Gordon


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From first-novelist Gordon, a vulgar, dingy little low-rent romance about an older man who puts his young wife out to stud. Dolph Robichek is orphaned in 1937, at the age of 17, and gives up a promising career as a concert pianist in England to fight the Nazis by helping to sneak Jews out of Europe. He ends up in Shanghai, where he meets legendary Turkish tycoon Salah Shawak, who takes him out of the rescue business and trains him as his right-hand man. After the war, Dolph rises to prominence of his own, thanks in part to Salah's connec-nections, and thus it is that he can't refuse his mentor one small favor: Salah wants Dolph to marry his 16-year-old daughter, the luscious Alahna. Dolph protests (he's 42) but soon must give in; and in fact, he and Alahna have a relatively happy relationship until 1980, when Alahna is 32. Then 60-year-old Dolph gets his bright idea: since he is sterile and since he wants an heir, he asks Alahna to sleep with a number of select candidates for fatherhood--a Nobel winner, an American Secretary of State, a race-car driver, etc., ad nauseam. Naturally, they all turn out to be duds or perverts or gay. One result is the entire mess splits up (temporarily) Dolph and Alahna--another is that she gets spotted in Aspen by a movie producer (""She was a sensational-looking woman--and she read The Wall Street Journal!"") and ends up having a child by a black songwriter. In the meantime, Dolph, sadly, has died of typhus--but, no, wait! He is risen! And Alahna falls into his arms. Mostly an excuse for sleazy eroticism (""She seemed to be sucking him deep within her hot, moist cavities""). Not a book to be on intimate terms with, in any event, unless certain precautions are taken.

Pub Date: June 6th, 1988
Publisher: Lyle Stuart