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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.
Steel's 48th novel (after Irresistible Forces), about weddings Hollywood-style, gets off to a slow start, but just when the singsong prose and bland introductory details begin to get frustrating the plot picks up steam. Beautiful, brainy lawyer Allegra Steinberg's life is one drama after another--once she gets rid of her boyfriend, philandering dullard Brandon Edwards. Her clients are superstar musicians and actors who phone her at 2 a.m. because they've fallen in love or gotten arrested or think they're being stalked. Her family are superstars, too: Mom is TV director Blaire Scott, Daddy is Golden Globe humanitarian-of-the-year producer Simon Steinberg, and then there's her 17-year-old sister, Sam, a leggy model whose pregnancy throws everyone for a loop. Steel's characters are already over-the-top, but leave it to this clever megaselling author to throw not one but three weddings into the mix. Movie stars Carmen Conners and Alan Carr elope, wig-and-polyester-style, in Las Vegas, and Sam secretly marries Jimmy Mazzoleri, who isn't the father of her baby. The centerpiece of the tale, however, is the big one, complete with an odious wedding planner, for Allegra and Jeff Hamilton, a gorgeous, soulful New York writer. Although Steel's prose is predictable, no one can gainsay her charitable heart. On the far side of tears and melodrama, everyone in the cast is redeemed and paired off--even Jeff's anti-Semitic mother and Allegra's sociopathic biological father, who richly deserve one another. (Apr.) Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
Steel's wildly successful formula is evident in this latest offering. Take beautiful and rich overachievers, add several complicated relationships, coupled with subplots too numerous to develop fully, and end with a mostly happy ending. Allegra Steinberg takes center stage here as she tackles unfulfilling personal relationships and the unenviable challenges of her career as an entertainment lawyer representing powerful yet quirky stars. Just when Allegra seems overwhelmed in her professional life, she falls in love and thus becomes the bride inherent in the title. The emotions, details, and interpersonal relationships affected by the upcoming nuptials all come into play in this flimsy yet strangely satisfying hammock companion. J.R. Horne admirably breathes life into Steel's stereotypical characters, who will undoubtedly captivate the author's vast following. Destined to be popular.DSusan McCaffrey, Haslett H.S., MI Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.