Friday, May 21, 2010

hiding in the bookshelves #3

I found the following book in one of the book cases in the bedroom. (for an explanation of this hiding-in-the-bookshelves feature, see this post)

Saint Julian by Walter Wangerin, Jr.

This haunting medieval novella, set somewhat ambiguously in the period of the Crusades, tells the story of Julian the Hospitaller, drawn from ancient legend. Revered for his famous devotion to the church, Julian must hide a violent nature that leads him to love the hunt and the kill above all. Saint Julian follows the inexorable descent of this golden-boy hero from favored son of nobility to the depths of beggardom, and eventual sainthood.
Rich with fascinating historical detail and deft religious metaphor, this story is powerfully gripping and lingers long after the read. Wangerin's juxtaposition of the forces of tremendous privilege and duty with those of obsession and fate make for storytelling at its finest. His language is dark, spare, and vivid — as sure and sharp as the marksmanship of Julian the obsessed hunter.
Julian's terrible fate is inescapable — yet it is only when he can sink no further that the fantastical possibility of his transformation breaks through like a thunderbolt to gather up his broken life. Prophetic and lyrical, Saint Julian will transport readers to a distant time filled with meaning for our own.

I remember picking this book up at a local 70%-off-everything bookstore. I like historical fiction and have a healthy curiosity about the lives of the saints so it seemed like a good book for me. I started reading it quite a while ago, but abandoned it to the book case because I had a hard time getting into it. I should probably give it another try.

No comments:

Post a Comment