THE VAIN AND THE VAINGLORIOUS by Katrinka Blickle

THE VAIN AND THE VAINGLORIOUS

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Stereotypes bob about in this soupily romantic dip into the heart--throbbing-circa 1935-39--of Boston's Verity Adams. Verity's father, head of a venerable shipbuilding firm, is naturally appalled when Verity marries Boston-Irish Kerf Kinsale (you know he's Irish because he says, anachronistically, ""Nay"" and ""Aye""). Keir has to marry her, you see, because of ye olde one-shot pregnancy, the result of an impulsive New Year's Eve. Verity, much in love and happy, gives birth to a daughter, Katie, but Keir disappears for their sake: the sickly baby and Verity will have better care in the bosom of her wealthy family. The next stop, after Father's death, is Europe. Verity, on the way to becoming a successful photographer, journeys thither with her brother Augustus--a fascist sympathizer who intends to dicker with the Germans. And on the crossing Verity meets British Viscount Emory Castlerosse, who eventually proposes. But in Paris she catches sight of Kerf, who all this time has been fighting with the Republicans in Spain. So, with Emory's help, Verity goes to war-torn Spain to find the man she thinks she no longer loves. Keir, however, has been carrying around Verity's picture--and Katie's! To save wounded Keir's life, then, Emory just manages to squeak them through to safety by giving up his passport, thus Sydney Carton-ing his way to a sacrificial curtain: Keir and Verity sail home on the Iie de France while Emory undoubtedly gets some heavenly reward for the far, far better thing he did for love of Verity. Like Blickle's earlier efforts--awkward and sappy.

Pub Date: April 10th, 1981
Publisher: Doubleday