Kirkus Star


Email this review


This is a story about a knight who was dying, and the princess who saved his life."" In other words: this is a story--a long story--about a rich-and-famous writer (Jonathan Livingston Seagull, Illusions) who was having a lousy time as an immature playboy, and the smart, beautiful ex-actress who forced him to grow up a little. Circa 1976, even with the sudden wealth of super-best-sellerdom, barnstormer/author Bach is having no luck in his search for his soulmate, ""the one most dear, perfect woman for me."" Many women--and a promiscuous lifestyle--seem the only answer: ""My perfect woman is partly the flash and intellect of this friend, she's partly the heart-racing beauty of that one,"" etc. But Bach isn't really happy with this. (""Whatever happened. . . to the airplane pilot from the fields of the Midwest?"") And then he meets wondrous Leslie Parrish, one-time minor actress (though Bach refers to her as ""Mary Moviestar"") and coolly professional film/TV-producer. At first Leslie is just a ""beautiful sister,"" offering chess, music, professional advice, and quasi-therapy. (Richard learns to overcome macho-ness and cry.) Then, after an auto-hypnotic epiphany--""I AM! YOU ARE! AND LOVE: IS ALL: THAT MATTERS!""--Richard and Leslie become lovers. They call each other ""wookie."" Happy ending? Not yet. Because Richard is terrified of commitment, terrified when Leslie speaks of ""love,"" unwilling to give up his impossible fantasy of a perfect-woman. (No, Leslie's not quite perfect: she's scared of flying.) He almost loses Leslie because of his neurotic defenses--until he wakes up, hearing his mind-voice: ""RICHARD! it screamed. . . You're here, you arrogant bastard, to learn about LOVE!"" So Richard promises to open up; Leslie promises to overcome flight-fear; they marry, fight the government on ecological issues, battle the IRS. . . and achieve astral-travel, in out-of-body flights for two: ""Then we were above the trees. . . Like student pilots on our first solo, we moved slowly together."" Those who went for Bach's mystic uplift in the short, fairy-tale packets of his two best-sellers may not all appreciate it here--in numbingly verbose form, romanticizing a humdrum case-history. But count on a sizable audience nonetheless--from the ranks of faithful admirers and insatiable celebrity-watchers.

Pub Date: Sept. 20th, 1984
Publisher: Morrow