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Sunday, 2 September 2012

"... a circle whose centre is everywhere ...."

The Gargoyle by Andrew Davidson

This novel is a romance, though it’s not your typical boy-meets-girl.  More like thirty-something male porn star (burned beyond recognition in a fiery, drug-induced car crash) meets beautiful, wild-haired, schizophrenic sculptress.  She comes upon him suicidal and alone in the burn ward of a hospital, and believes him to be her lover from medieval Germany, where she was a nun and he a mercenary soldier.  As she unfolds for him the story of their former lives, she draws him in with her words.

Meanwhile, she sculpts gargoyles with an intensity that resembles possession; sleeping naked on a block of stone until it reveals to her what lies within, then labouring manically for days without food or rest until she is able to birth it into the world.  

About her creative process she says: “’I’m a vessel that water is poured into and splashes out of.  It’s a circle, a flowing circle between God and the gargoyles and me, because that is what God is – a circle whose centre is everywhere and whose circumference is nowhere.’”

Equal parts romance and science fiction, The Gargoyle is absolutely compelling.

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