Danielle Steel has been hailed as one of the world's most popular authors, with over 650 million copies of her novels sold. Her many international bestsellers include Country, Prodigal Son, Pegasus, A Perfect Life, Power Play, Winners, First Sight, Until the End of Time, The Sins of the Mother, and other highly acclaimed novels. She is also the author of His Bright Light, the story of her son Nick Traina's life and death; A Gift of Hope, a memoir of her work with the homeless; Pure Joy, about the dogs she and her family have loved; and the children's book Pretty Minnie in Paris.
The subtitle, "A High Tech Love Story," need not frighten Steel's loyal fans. More fanciful than technologically snappy, this novel (her 42nd, after The Long Road Home) grafts one scientific wrinkle onto the usual romance. Stunned when her feckless husband declares that their companionable but passionless marriage is over (then sues her for alimony and child support), 41-year-old Stephanie spends the next year improving both her body and her self-respect. During a trip to Paris, she attracts a suitor; Peter Baker is a fellow New Yorker‘and everything Stephanie's been hoping for. After a chaste but exhilarating evening together, Stephanie is sure that she'll never see him again, but he tracks her down in the Hamptons and they fall in love. An executive at a company specializing in bionics, Peter has been working on a secret invention. When he travels to California on business, his creation, Paul Klone, turns up at Stephanie's door. Paul is a physical replica of Peter, but the resemblance ends there. Whereas Peter favors Oxford shirts and khakis, Paul is a fan of Versace's most outlandish creations. Although she has been pleased with Peter's lovemaking, Paul's triple back flips during sex leave Stephanie singing the body electric. When Peter becomes jealous of Paul, things get sticky. Although the SF element is minimal (approximately one part Ray Bradbury to 35 parts Steel), Steel's speculative whimsy spices her romantic concoction to produce a light but charming read. (June)
Even the most successful authors occasionally hit a bump in the road. In what appears to be a quest for innovation, Steel (The Ghost, LJ 8/97) has struck a rather large and insurmountable roadblock in this ludicrous tale of a love triangle between a newly divorced mom, a shy, serious businessman, and his wild but tacky clone. If the story sounds silly and unbelievableÄit is. The clone wears satin and rhinestones, guzzles bourbon, and performs acrobatic flips during lovemaking. And the reader is supposed to believe that our heroine is actually torn between the two "men." Even more confusing is the description of the clone as "tempered by bionics," completely man-made, with wires in his neck and a removable head. Even if the reader buys this set-up, the characters are not well developed, and the romance doesn't really work. Steel fans will of course line up for this title, but don't expect repeat readers. Order the minimum to cover demand.ÄKathy Ingels Helmond, Indianapolis- Marion Cty. P.L., IN
Praise for Danielle Steel
"Steel is one of the best!"--Los Angeles Times "Few modern writers convey the pathos of family and material life with such heartfelt empathy."--The Philadelphia Inquirer "Steel pulls out all the emotional stops. . . . She delivers!"--Publishers Weekly "What counts for the reader is the ring of authenticity."--San Francisco Chronicle