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Along the channels of her mind she ran down empty corridors, opening and slamming doors""--what gush, ripped from pasteboard Freudian movies of the Forties. Nor is the rest of the writing less inflated. Stefan de Bernard, an international playboy-thief, is hired by a band of big jewel fences to rob Margaretta Praetorius of the legendary Code Four jewels: the fat Brasileras Ruby, the ruby-encrusted Crusader's Cross, the incomparable African green garnets, and ""the splendid Madagascar sapphire, yellow as boiling sun."" When Stefan arrives at the Praetorius Point turreted Long Island mansion ""on a promontory by the sea,"" he quickly ingratiates himself--as part of the summer staff--with the old woman, but getting her granddaughter Kate into bed takes more time. The jewels, where are they hidden? In no obvious wall safe. And how did Margaretta's late father Old Dutch the munitions king gather all these fabulous jewels in total secrecy and conceal them here for over 50 years? How many have been sacrificed to that secrecy? Perhaps it would be best for Stefan to marry Kate, let the old lady die, and share the inheritance of the jewels! . . . Gabble that glazes.

Pub Date: Jan. 1st, 1977
Publisher: Coward, McCann & Geoghegan