Harcourt, Mar 2003, 15.00, 694 pp.
Jewish Zipporah Zangwill married Catholic Peter Duffy. They have five children together. However, over the years, the former philosophy professor Peter's health degenerates until he becomes mentally incompetent and physically incapacitated. Zipporah takes Peter to Italy so his friends and peers will see how far he has deteriorated. In Italy, Zipporah receives help with her spouse from an Israeli nurse, Debra Cohen, who vanishes immediately following Peter death.
As the years go by, widow Zipporah inherits a fortune from a friend and takes a wealthy lover. She is now a senior citizen and her five children are now middle aged with adult children of their own. Finding a clue to Debra's disappearance, Zipporah's grandson Bertram searches for the missing Sabra though many years have passed since she vanished.
This is an interesting character study that looks closely at a mixed religious family with a Catholic patriarch and a Jewish matriarch guiding them over the years. The story line enables the reader to see life as Zipporah, Peter, their children and grandchildren live it.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner