An Improbable Pairing
by Gary Dickson
Pub Date 08 Jan 2019
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In September of 1963, Scott Stoddard, an American graduate student, is traveling to Switzerland, when he meets the Countess de Rovere, a French divorcee; he is smitten, and she is intrigued. What begins as a little coquetry soon becomes a serious love affair, much to the consternation of the Countess’s ex-husband and mother, not to mention the Countess’s friends of European high society. A meeting of equals poses problems enough, but what about one between two people who seem to have so many differences? And when a man of traditional attitudes couples with an independent and self-confident woman, something’s got to give. It won’t be the countess. As their liaison transcends an affair that cannot be dismissed, they all agree that something must be done.
An Improbable Pairing is a historical romance that chronicles the enduring themes of a young man’s coming of age and the rebellious love of the mismatched. This pas de deux, set in the golden years of 1960s Paris, Geneva, Gstaad, and Cannes, provides an insider’s peek into the worlds of haute couture, three-star gourmet restaurants, and lavish hotel suites—the domains of rank and privilege. But society’s privileged resist when an interloper threatens to upset their cozy structure.
“Une merveilleuse histoire ou chaque personnage démontre l’importance d’avoir l’esprit ouvert au monde, la faculté de pouvoir embrasser différentes cultures et de créer de cette manière une vie ensemble, au début improbable, mais finalement si riche, remplie d’amour. J’attends la suite! A marvelous tale in which each character demonstrates the importance of an open mind, the ability to embrace different cultures, and to create in this manner a life together; while in the beginning improbable, it is in the end so rich, and so filled with love. I await the sequel!”
—Nadine Juton, professor of literature at the Alliance Française of Los Angeles, University of Strasbourg, France, master’s degree in French literature
“An Improbable Pairing is an entertaining romp through Europe’s high society of the 1960s, featuring a lovable young American rogue who aspires to love above his station and the countess who possesses the wit and charm to conquer him. Upon opening this book, you might feel you've stumbled into a Technicolor world starring a young Paul Newman and Audrey Hepburn, their romance blossoming amid the sparkling sights of Europe. Grab a box of popcorn and enjoy!”
—Robert M Eversz, author of Shooting Elvis
“For traveled citizens of the world, Gary Dickson’s An Improbable Pairing is a look back on glory enjoyed by the lucky few in a manner all his—experienced young and clearly owned. Reminiscent of Hemingway, Fitzgerald, and Ford Maddox Ford—with nods to Elliot’s poetic sense and bright flashes of Henry James—a young American encounters Old World and an older woman with a modern ethic. To add some intriguing tang to this classic, coming-of-age romance, stir in the author’s encyclopedic love of fine cuisine, fashion, fine wines, great architecture, and beautiful women. All of which adds up to a compelling travelogue of culture and a complicated love. Eyes, ears, and all senses wide open and on high alert.”
—Gregory J. Furman, founder and chairman of The Luxury Marketing Council
“An Improbable Paring, set in Paris and Geneva in the 1960s, is a delightful and architecturally cinematic romantic romp, about lovers you actually root for, written with tenderness and wit by a certifiable bon vivant. I absolutely adored it. I had so much fun. My heart was in my mouth up to the last minute. A page turner.”
—Shelley Bonus, writer, astronomical historian, and lecturer and session director of the Mt. Wilson Observatory 60-inch Telescope.
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