WHEN EROTIC HEAT TURNS INTO LOVE LIGHT

Lit crits, those old prunes, scratched their high foreheads at the success of Robert James Waller's The Bridges of Madison County. This tale of middle-age passion -- in which a roving photographer, Robert Kincaid, has a volcanic three-day affair with Francesca Johnson, an Italian woman who has lived for 20 years as an Iowa farmwife -- was filled with clichas masquerading as erotic eruptions. But Waller knows the secret of romance novels. He writes the way people feel and think when they are first in love-as if every emotion had the force of God's creation, as if such shivers had never...

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