VALENTINA by Evelyn Anthony


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Another of Miss Anthony's orchestral historical interludes, this relates the adventures of Valentina, Polish heroineski, during the unsettling months of Napoleon's abortive invasion of Russia. Valentina was forced into marriage to a sadistic Polish nobleman, Count Theodore Grunowski. The Count is not only a pig, he's a political maneuverer. He threatens to have her sister (who is half Russian) exterminated unless sweet Valentina consents to become a spy for Poland by giving of herself (and we all know what that means) to a French officer. But Hark! The French have wind of the plot. Intelligence officer De Chavel steps between Valentina and her intended assignation and is somewhat undone by her obvious innocence. She confesses. Chivalrous: De Chavel demands satisfaction From the Count while whisking her away and arranging for the safety of her sister. Love, of course is inevitable but for the sake of the plot De Chavel is first a soldier, then a cynic (result of an earlier marriage) and he is off to them wars. We plough through the details of the defeated campaign, a wounded De Chavel and the maneuvers of Valentina who is bustling about in the middle of crisis after crisis trying to find her man. Meanwhile the Count is lurking, ready to demand his satisfaction. Actually the writing generally surmounts the pulpy plot but it's definitely femininski.

Pub Date: Oct. 28th, 1966
Publisher: Doubleday