Friday, June 27, 2008

The Gargoyle-Andrew Davidson

The Gargoyle
Andrew Davidson
Doubleday, Aug 2008, $25.95
ISBN: 0385524943

The porno actor with the scar on his heart is driving on a curving mountainous road when he loses control and crashes; probably because of his coke drenched brain. He suffers third degree burns that are so painful he decides that the recovery is not worth it as he believes even coke will fail him especially since he accidentally poured bourbon on his crotch just before the crash; thus turning the alcohol into an accelerant that made his penis into a candle that the nurse has since disposed of as medical waste. As he plans his suicide once out of the hospital especially the burn ward, insane patient Marianne Engel visits him.

She claims to be seven centuries old and his lover hundreds of years ago in Germany. The burn victim assumes the woman is a nut, but as she keeps seeing him, he wonders about himself as he is attracted to this kook he assumes is a mad woman suffering from schizophrenia. He learns she is a highly regarded sculptress whose gargoyles are in demand and soon has the man she claims was her lover wanting a life with her once he leaves the hospital.

This is a strange second chance at love novel that hooks the audience once Marianne informs the unnamed narrator what she was to him in another time and place. Her details of a long time ago convince the former porn star she is genuine although he wonders if losing his penis cost him his head. Fans who prefer something different will relish Andrew Davidson’s fascinating odd tale of love.

Harriet Klausner

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