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From a New York Times–bestselling author: A novel about a member of the Greatest Generation wrestling with moral choices over the next generation’s war in Vietnam.
Chip Benedict appeared to have the best of everything: wealth, education, good looks, charm, and intelligence. Shortly before entering law school, he married Alida, a pale beauty who also had the cunning and talent to become the debutante of the year, escaping the progressively threadbare world of tarnished elegance and unpaid bills to which she was born.
Alida’s life continued in a storybook fashion with her marriage to Chip, a seemingly perfect and certainly honorable man. Called to serve in World War II, he returned a hero, decorated for bravery at the Normandy landing. Following in his father’s footsteps, he became chairman of the board of the prestigious Benedict Glass Company founded by his grandfather.
And yet, with all of his gifts, Chip is haunted by dark guilt that drives him to excel, conform, and embrace a righteousness that he fails to perceive as hypocrisy. In business he becomes the perfect corporate executive, lauded in Fortune and Forbes. He serves his community, supports the arts, and patriotically honors his government. But when it comes to choosing sides on the issue of Vietnam, he will make a decision that casts aside the deepest ties and loyalties of his life.
“Through a series of flashbacks the narrators come to realize how outside events have influenced their lives. Auchincloss uses their story to show us the frailties of human nature when confronted with politics and morality. This psychological novel is perceptive, elegantly spare, and well crafted.” —Library Journal