Thursday, March 26, 2009

The Gargoyle by Andrew Davidson

The Gargoyle
by Andrew Davidson is the narrative tale of a nameless man who is burned in a car accident. The only form of motivation he has left in life is to plot his suicide upon his release from the hospital. One day bleeds into the next until it so happens that our narrator wakes to find a woman standing over him. She claims to have been his lover in medieval Germany and tells him that he has already been burned in a previous life. Though he is in utter disbelief, claiming this women to be a psychiatric patient, our narrator can't help but be intrigued by this woman and her stories. Thoughts of suicide retreat into the darkest corners of his mind as he discovers a new purpose in life. He anxiously awaits and anticipates more visits and craves to hear her stories of the past. This woman, Marianne, is not just a great storyteller, but an artist as well. She carves gargoyles out of stone that are well known and sold at a great price. However, Marianne claims to only have twenty-seven sculptures left until her life reaches its end.

A beautify told tale. Davidson certainly did his research and it shows. It took him seven years to complete this story. I hope it doesn't take another seven more. It started very slowly with this book. Taking only a few sips...20 minutes here, 30 minutes here. Once I reached the half-way mark, I was taking large gulps, reading for as long as I could. It was a difficult book to set down. It was almost unbearable to see this story end. Water for Elephants was my top book for last year, and this will undoubtedly be my top choice for this year. I highly recommend it.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

City of Ember by Jeanne Duprau

Disaster has struck. In order to save the human race, an underground city is built and a select few are sent to live in the City of Ember for approximately 200 years. The hope is that whatever threatens all of mankind will subside by then and people will once again be able to live on earth instead of under it. The secret way out is stored in a box to be honored and passed down generation by generation. However, the box becomes forgotten, and mankind grows to know only of the underground city that has 12 hours of daylight per street lamps only. This wouldn't be a problem except the generator that powers the city is breaking down, leaving the entire city in periods of darkness. Supplies are running out and people are on edge. While some people hope for rescue that will never come, 12-year-old Lina Mayfleet and Doon Horrow journey forward in search of hope and in search of light. A delightful read for anyone looking for a quick escape from reality.

Next up is The Gargoyle by by Andrew Davidson.