From Publishers Weekly
In a shallow take on a profound subject, a middle-aged man describes his sexual encounters with his two adult daughters, having met themAfor the first time since they were small childrenAwhen they were 21 and 23. The younger daughter, a gorgeous, earthy actress, reminds him of her mother at the same age. The elder sister is the spitting image of her old man in his youth, a lonely intellectual and a virgin. He feels an instant sexual connection with each daughter; when he crudely seduces them, one after the other, he believes he is simply responding to their desires, as a humane father would. The affairs continue for a while, until the younger daughter leaves him for more appropriate boyfriends and he tires of the other, eventually forsaking her for a new (unrelated) young woman. He describes his sexual love slowly evolving into a paternal one (despite occasional reunions with the younger daughter). Schmidt, who the publisher claims is an award-winning screenwriter writing under a pseudonym, asserts that his sexual relationship with his daughters hasn't in any way harmed them and that, although he is dead to one of them (she has said kaddish for him), his presence in their lives has been beneficial. Because of his financial gifts, he contends, they are both happier and more successful. Though he occasionally asks himself whether these affairs should have begun (and continued), he never poses the question to his daughters. Never mind the utter moral turpitude of this chronicle: even readers in search of literary erotica are likely to be disappointed, as the sex scenes are clich?d, lacking the wit or daring of an Ana?s Nin or a Pauline R?age. (Oct.)
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