Thursday, September 26, 2013

Book Review: The Gargoyle by Andrew Davidson

Title: The Gargoyle
Author: Andrew Davidson
Genre: Adult Fiction
Pages: 465
Publisher: Random House Canada
Year Published: 2008
First Line: “Accidents ambush the unsuspecting, often violently, just like love.”

“The narrator of The Gargoyle is a very contemporary cynic, physically beautiful and sexually adept, who dwells in the moral vacuum that is modern life. As the book opens, he is driving along a dark road when he is distracted by what seems to be a flight of arrows. He crashes into a ravine and suffers horrible burns over much of his body. As he recovers in a burn ward, undergoing the tortures of the damned, he awaits the day when he can leave the hospital and commit carefully planned suicide for he is now a monster in appearance as well as in soul.
 But then a beautiful and compelling, but clearly unhinged, sculptress of gargoyles by the name of Marianne Engel appears at the foot of his bead and insists that they were once lovers- In medieval Germany. In her telling, he was a badly injured mercenary and she was a nun and a scribe in the famed monastery of Engelthal who nursed him back to health. As she spins their tale of in Scheherazade fashion and relates equally mesmerising stories of deathless love in Japan, Iceland, Italy, and England, he finds himself drawn back to life- and, finally, in love. He is released into Marianne’s care and takes up residence in her huge stone house. But all is not well. For one thing, the pull of his past sins becomes ever more powerful as the morphine he is prescribed becomes even more addictive. For another, Marianne receives word from God that she has only twenty-seven statues to complete- and her time on earth will be finished.”

My Rating: 5/5

Every once in a while, I find a book that I have so much trouble reviewing, because I simply can not put into words the feelings that it has caused in me. This is the case for this book. This book was a lucky find for me. I stumbled across it at a yard sale, and got caught up by the title and front cover on its own. As I began to read, I became increasingly interested in the story that Andrew Davidson was telling. A story that will forever change my view on what is possible and what is not. I loved this book with all my heart. It’s confusing, but in a good way. The way that a reader can’t tell what is going to happen next, in the way that you aren’t sure what you believe any more. And finally a book that leaves a few interpretations up to you. You can choose what you want to think, it’s not there in black and white, you can let your imagination think whatever it will.  I’d be lying if I said it was like a “Choose Your Own Adventure Book” so please don’t take that from what I’ve mentioned, that wouldn’t be the right way to describe it.  There is so many things I want to say, but not nearly enough words to say them properly and without spoiling this book.

Thanks for reading,
Sidny xoxo

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