THE SANDS OF TIME by Sidney Sheldon
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Sheldon surpasses himself and edges close to self-parody in his goofiest novel yet: an antic thriller teeming with twists and absurdities and featuring three Sheldonesque heroines--nuns!--who find happiness in the arms of. . .Basque terrorists. ""The silence was like a gentle snowfall, soft and hushed, as soothing as the whisper of the summer wind, as quiet as the passage of the stars."" With poetry like that setting the scene here, it's clear that Sheldon's in top form. And so the nuns, cloistered within a Cistercian Convent in Avila, Spain, appear. . .but wait!--Sister Lucia isn't really a nun: daughter of a Mafia boss, killer of those who set up her dad, she's posing as a nun only to avoid arrest. And Sister Megan--she's a nun; but she's also, unknowingly, a potential billionairess, the foundling daughter of the creator of the Scott Industries megacorp. And gorgeous Sister Garciela--of the ""eyes that were luminous black pools""--why does she suffer nightmares of ravishment by a giant Moor'? Luckily for the three, a band of macho men turn up to teach them a worship the Church never imagined. It's Basque freedom fighter Jamie Miro--""six feet tall, with a strong intelligent face, a muscular body, and brooding dark eyes""--and his merry men who whisk the sisters off on the adventure of their lives after Spain's own devil, the dread Col. Ramon Acoca (""a giant with a scarred face and cold, obsidian eyes"") invades the convent in search of Miro. On the lam, terrorists and nuns(there's a fourth sister, homely Teresa, but her quick, sad demise proves only the tragic rule by which the others' measure their new bliss) enjoy hairbreadth escapes, watch a bullfight, survive betrayal (who is the Judas in their midst?) and arrest, and, mostly, fall into love and sex. Oh, yes: Megan wins back her birthright and becomes America's richest lady, and three years later an at-last captured Miro is seconds away from death by the garrote when Megan turns up and. . . . Violence and sex--even nun rape--and romance, political and corporate intrigue, history and theology lessons, travelogue, snatches of Spanish song--there's something for everyone here, except, of course, those looking for plot, character, and prose with some root in realism and some reach for style. In other words, another Sheldon super-hit.

Pub Date: Nov. 10th, 1988
Publisher: Morrow