THE DISAPPEARANCE OF GREGORY PLUCKROSE by Elizabeth Gundy

THE DISAPPEARANCE OF GREGORY PLUCKROSE

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KIRKUS REVIEW

I detest adventure,"" begins this neo-Woodhousian narrative by G. Pluckrose. ""It's tasteless, showy, vulgar and uncalled for."" A bit strained at times, Gundy's flamboyant, hyperbolic gambols bring a happy lunacy to this comic invention--in which a slip of an interior decorator outwits a maniacal band of mercenary terrorists and their chiefs in a Caribbean jungle. Self-profiled as ""slim, intense, soign‚, un peu high-strung,"" Gregory Pluckrose, weary of casting aesthetic pearls before oil-money yahoos, gratefully accepts a live-in post as decorating adviser to an elderly pair of Maine blue bloods in their ""neopastiche elephantine"" jewel of a cottage. His employers are Fielding, a magnetic empire builder (for whom poorly paid millions toil all over the globe), and wife Julia, a sophisticated charmer. Even the intrusion of their niece, the horrid Sissie--appallingly athletic and given to left-wing jollities at dinner--does not mar Gregory's enjoyment of exquisite table and environs. But then, alas, comes the cruise to the Caribbean, on a yacht captained by that ""impenetrably whiskered"" Down East old carp, Albion Scaggby, and capture by piratical terrorists! In a wink, ""the delighted dream called Gregory Pluckrose"" is steaming in chains in a reeking, bug-infested jungle hut. ""In a mere matter of hours, my health was wrecked, my spirit broken, my sanity jeoparidized, and my bridgework endangered."" How Gregory, ""who should be shopping at Bloomie's,"" becomes King of the Jungle involves: his employers' instinctive wallowing toward lust and money; Sissie's guerrilla career; and for Gregory, the advent of a marvellous prehistoric pig, who digs up meals of delicious tubers and brings him to liberation, via Albion and an ancient canoe. The most lightweight of Gundy's comic novels, but with an occasional sharp satiric bite. And the pig is a wow.

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1985
Publisher: Doubleday