OH, BE CAREFUL by Lee Colgate


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This is one in a litter of books about puppy love on the spring lists; it is also the second one about a first affair in which the heroine is called Nina and while she is not quite as appealing as her predecessor in Nina Upstairs (p. 1109) she has moments, once you get past her jeune fille- debutante beginnings. These are not entirely her fault; ""Mummy"" is Southern, her father is very rich, on Wall Street, and they have been very protective even though for the greater part of her story here they are conveniently absentee. When it opens, Nina is thinking of having an affair with Mac, the boy she has always gone out with. Her faculty adviser, who seems called upon to do a little housemothering, says ""Don't"" is safe but not necessarily ""the best"" way. Mac drops her, which leaves her even readier to have an affair with a Navy flyer, Van, twice her age and resistant to illusions of any kind. They spend an Easter vacation together, a summer in Europe, but when she tries to domesticate him-- with a house off campus (this is some college she attends)-- Van is not only defensively churlish but cruel... Oh, Be Careful has some nice points of revelation and surprise, not only for Nina; the tone is intimate; and women will find that it's not only a wide-eyed but wide-awake and on occasion affecting entertainment.

Publisher: Harper & Row