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Part II (The Immigrants was Part I) of a gentle chestnut about a San Francisco family in which good men rise from humble toil, bad men are bankers, and women are lovely (also often loaded with dough). For instance, remember lovely aristocratic Jean, of a prime banking family? She's the one who was divorced by erstwhile fisherman Dan, he of the big shoulders, who became a shipping tycoon but booted all (and Jean) so he could marry lovely May Ling. Now Dan, penniless, is back at the nets, but he will return to big-time shipbuilding during World War II (""unless we build ships, this whole stinking world is going up in flames"") and he will lose May Ling in the barrage at Pearl Harbor. While the descendants of Dan's early cronies (an ethnic minestrone) cross paths and/or pair off, Dan and Jean's daughter Barbara does a poor-little-rich-girl gig, feeding and nursing longshoremen in Harry Bridges' days. She also finds a true love in Paris (who dies), becomes a famous correspondent (later a best-selling novelist), barely escapes Nazi Germany, and then searches for True Love II--one Bernie Cohen, who fought the war in Palestine and elsewhere, and is, like papa Dan, of considerable heft and wing span. The dialogue is so familiar you can sing along (""You're some woman"") or sink into the philosophic floral arrangements: ""There's a moment in life when something hits you over the head. . . ."" For an undemanding evening--great with popcorn.

Pub Date: Oct. 6th, 1978
ISBN: 1402237928
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin