memories of the ’70s – The Other Side of Midnight by Sidney Sheldon

theothersideofmidnightA bestseller that became a film and the story of two women whose lives are tied together because of love and loss during World War II: The Other Side of Midnight by Sidney Sheldon.

Sheldon, a successful writer of television and plays, also focused on novels and his second novel, The Other Side of Midnight, was a thriller set in Europe, with two women as the lead characters.

Catherine Alexander and Noelle Page are the two protagonists, two women linked through their relationship with one man: Lawrence Douglas.

Page meets Lawrence when she is very young, escaping her life as a pawn of her Father to survive in Paris. She promises herself to him before he leaves for the war, with Douglas saying he will return to marry her.

Alexander is a naive young woman who after leaving college moves to Washington DC and has a relationship with a politician whose work leads her to meet Douglas. Known as a charmer, Douglas lures the young Catherine into a relationship, who marries him.

Page doesn’t forget being scorned by Douglas and as she tries to blackmail him after learning of his duplicity and marriage to another, she also has several men on a string as she becomes a famous actress, including one man she helps save from the Nazis by smuggling him to north Africa.

Meanwhile Douglas and Alexander move to Greece after the war, with Douglas working for Page, although not realizing who she is. Her determination to take her revenge leads her to start an affair with Douglas and destroy his marriage.

The duo decide to kill Alexander, but when she learns of their plot, she survives their first attempt and then disappears, while Douglas and Page are accused of murder and go to trial.

The novel was published in 1973, the second one by Sheldon. The book was a success, reaching the number one spot on the New York Times Bestseller List and being optioned into film, which was released in 1977. Consequently the film also became a Bollywood film in Hindi, Oh Bewafa in 1980.

In 1990, Sheldon wrote the sequel, Memories of Midnight, to offer a resolution to the character of Catherine Alexander, who had disappeared and possibly reappeared at the end of The Other Side of Midnight.




About Waheeda Harris

A pop culture junkie with a penchant for exploring our planet.
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