ROMANCE by Natalie Anderson Scott


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Case of obsession plus possession, number four. First in The Sisters Living-sto with the abnormal family relationship; second in The Story of Mrs. Murphy, alcohol in control; third in The Husband, an unbelievably sadistic husband-wife relationship; finally in Romance as a victim of concentration camp atrocities allows the worship of his heroism, the miracle of his rescue, the incredibility of the survival of a shell of humanity, to forge links that human contacts cannot wholly break. Mrs. Johnson was still young, attractive, starved of normal relationships, living a a very public life as the symbol of the wife sacrificing all for the hero husband. And there was the natural wholly masculine, successful writer, finishing his novel in the quarters loaned him by the Johnson's benefactor, in an Italian coast resort near Genoa. The out come was predictable from the start, but Johnson, shell of a man that he was, smiled and smiled and was a villain, even in his death putting out the clutch of death and claiming her. A queer, unpleasant, haunted book, with an undercurrent of cynicism. Mrs. Scott's peculiarly archaic style, with its massed adjectives and its repeat pattern of characterization- in the homeric tradition-becomes more than a trif wearisome.

Pub Date: Nov. 7th, 1951
Publisher: Dutton