GLORY GAME by Janet Dailey


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Leaving behind the gutsy women and the infectious robustness of her previous novels (the Calder series, Santiago Blue), Dailey takes a disappointing detour into soap-and-sable romance--on the polo fields of Palm Beach, England, and Argentina. Leslie ""Luz"" Thomas, nee Kincaid, has been dumped by lawyer husband Drew. (He prefers to have ""lawyer talk""--and a new baby--with colleague Claudia.) Does Luz greet this news with fire and spunk? Alas, no: she wallows in a sense of failure. (""What happened,"" she asks, ""to all the dreams?"") And she finds distraction from her sorrow by following son Rob and daughter Trisha around the polo-tour circuit--where they all meet magnetic Argentinian polo pro Raul Buchanan. Trisha yearns for dreamy Raul; Rob looks forward to enrolling in Raul's polo school. But it's sable-draped Luz who excites the polo star: their volatile relationship eventually leads to blissful consummation in a deserted adobe hut during a storm! Tragedy, however, is just around the comer: Rob, who has been secretly freebasing cocaine, explodes in rage at the love affair of his mother and Raul; later Rob will literally, lethally explode. So at the close bereaved Trisha blames Rob's troubles on the ""pressure of being a Kincaid"" (the millions, the polo)--while grieving Luz eventually finds a new value in herself without a man, plans to train polo ponies in Virginia. . . and at last reunites with Raul. Lots of details and glamour for polo fans--but much of the Dailey readership will find the standard romance a yawn, while missing the fizz and grit of those lady ranchers and aviators.

Pub Date: June 1st, 1985
Publisher: Poseidon/Pocket Books--dist. by Simon & Schuster