A formalized entertainment of middle-aged passion which is a sly pursuit of extramarital encounters and characters at cross purposes and provides engaging diversion along light lines. Arthur Middleton, happily married at 45, becomes involved with Annabel, a callous 18, whom the Middletons have been using as a partner for their schoolboy son. Arthur's wife imitates and retaliates in an affair with an old family friend, Charles Addinsell, and then suggests that Addinsell take Annabel away from Arthur. However, when Addinsell seems to become too seriously ensnared, the wife, jealous now of Annabel on two counts, gets even with her by pairing Addinsell off with a circumspect young friend of Annabel's. This too has its consequences- beyond her anticipation.... His first new novel in more than two years, this is a skillful intaglio of inconstancy which is pleasantly deft and devious. For an expected audience, sales and rentals.