A witless first novel, crudely written, about a young woman who finds herself in charge of a vast jewelry empire. As the stow opens in 1979, Gaia Gerald is a beautiful jewelry designer climbing the ladder at Ferrante-New York Jewelers, the ritzy Madison Avenue store of the famous Italian-based Ferrante Jewelers. Gala was raised as an orphan in Chicago, so imagine her surprise when she's called in by the store's president and told that she has inherited the entire Ferrante-New York firm--thanks to that aging patriarch Ugo Ferrante, who has died and left the place to her, believing she's his long-lost granddaughter. Once Gaia recovers from the shock, she sets about running the joint with a will, but does face a few problems: the Mafia is on the board of directors; Ugo did not die of natural causes but was murdered; her marriage to venal lawyer Merrill Ross is a dismal failure; and somebody is trying to kill her. It turns out she's the unwitting pawn in a highly convoluted scheme set in motion nearly 30 years before by a bunch of conniving Italians who want to wrest control of the gem empire from the Ferrantes --not to mention the fortune in jewelry (representing money stolen from Jews during WW II) that is hidden in some catacombs near Rome, and where Gala ends up, fighting for her life, with husband Merrill, who turns out to be a crazed murderer. . . Dull, complicated, and awkwardly written (""The massive bed had provided sheltering rest for generations of the Corchese family, was the site of ecstatic passion, the wonders of births, survivor of those who had lain upon it"").