LADY by Thomas Tryon


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Lady, with no other presence in sight -- no supernatural special effects -- is the equivalent of a magnum of Kool-aid without ice, and her story is told through the wide and loving eyes of Woody, the youngster who lives across the Green and admires her elegant chic trailing clouds of chiffon while little knowing what takes place, what took place, behind those drawn shades. True he had picked up a few facts -- she had lost her husband, lost the child she never carried to term. But she truly charmed and tolerated everyone in the small village of Pequot Landing and saved her nicest words for Woody. Tryon's rather uneventful (until the crowded close) novel is full of all those nostalgic fillers of the '30's -- Jack Benny and Little Orphan Annie, the icebox before it became a fridge, and there will be those glad to take a copacetic stroll down memory lane where Ipana for the Smile of Beauty still shows her perfect teeth. Woody grows up, Lady grows older, and only then is revealed the shocking (oh my) tragedy of her life -- indeed Mr. Tryon has crossed the picket fence into Yerby country. Still without too much first-guessing, and with the successes of The Other and Harvest Home -- and selection of the Literary Guild -- this will probably do better than we think it should as a heart-and-hand warmer of only yesterday.

Pub Date: Nov. 1st, 1974
Publisher: Knopf