THE LOVERS by Morris West


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 Killing time before starting his civilian life, an Aussie sailor signs on with the crew of an American yacht and promptly falls in love with the owner's gorgeous, young fiancÇe--in a clever romance by a master entertainer. The Second World War has been over for seven years, but big, handsome Bryan Cavanaugh, late of His Majesty's Australian Navy, is still trying to figure out what to do with his life. He's gotten his law degree, but hanging out his shingle in Melbourne holds no appeal. Does he want Europe? The US? To support himself and his dithering, Bryan, a skilled shiphandler, has been bumming around the Med, doing whatever people will hire him to do. American millionaire Declan Molloy hires him to crew his grand new yacht, the Salamandra d'Oro. Molloy's a brooding, two-fisted rich guy who's decided to settle down long enough to marry into one of Europe's most distinguished families, the Farnesi of Italy and the Vatican. His fiancÇe, selected with the help of the Pope's closest advisors, is the astonishingly beautiful, thoroughly spoiled, and shockingly young Giulia Farnesi. The middle-class Cavanaugh finds himself in uncharted waters. Molloy's crew also includes a resourceful Cunard stewardess to relieve his sexual needs (since Giulia must remain a virgin), a couple of male American dancers, a philosophizing cook, and Molloy's lifelong Greco-American chum, who is rather more than chum. In addition to his relationship with the See of Rome, Molloy does business with the CIA--business that lands his dear friend in the hospital and puts young Bryan, badly smitten with Giulia, into the number one spot on the crew. When Molloy flies off to Naples to be with his battered pal, Giulia, Bryan, and Molloy's aristocratic guests have time to get into all sorts of interesting trouble. Very charming. It's an old song, but West (The Masterclass, 1991, etc. etc.) sure knows the words and has a great voice. (First printing of 125,000)

Pub Date: Sept. 30th, 1993
ISBN: 1-55611-370-6
Page count: 304pp
Publisher: Donald Fine
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1st, 1993


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