Decisamente una storia d’amore sui generis. Non ha un lieto fine sotto certi punti di vista per tanto non può meritare un apprezzamento positivo. Voto 4
This book hits you around the face in the first few pages and gave me the 'movie' sensation of 'watching with my hands over my eyes'! The legends that are written from throughout the world were compelling in their own right, yet when all pieced together later on captured my imagination.
I was taken on a journey throughout this book to the point where I felt the pain and emotion of the narrator. This absorbed me from beginning to end although I felt that a couple of the later chapters didn't add to the story and were literaly out of character with the rest of the book. Captivating, imaginative and a recommended page turner....Continua
At first, I thought I was going to hate it. Not sure why, something in the character of Marianne, mainly. I never truly warmed to her - she is the weakest part of this book, imo - but twenty pages in, I was falling in love with the narrator and his tortured, ruined life and utterly absorbed by his voyage - the discovery that he's only really come alive at the point where he thinks his life is over. He loses so much but ultimately gains a *real* life, far richer than the shallow existence he had when he was whole and handsome.
It's certainly not the plot that makes this book so memorable - imo, the story's just a device to hang the writing on. It's Andrew Davison's lyrical prose that draws you in to the narrator's world so closely that you live the tale rather than read it.
The Gargoyle is a book that's lived in my imagination long after I finished reading it. Not quite a masterpiece, but close....Continua
A great literature about love and pain. It is in no way an easy book, but if one insists it till the end, a man's transition from ignorant to loving and caring can be seen.
The story started from the narrator being severely burnt, and subsequently undergone a series of burnt treatments. Prior to the accident, the narrator was a good-looking guy making huge money from pornographic industry. With plenty of money and women, he was yet someone without a soul. The accident had sent him to Hell because his outlook became so weird that everyone would think he had done something wicked to bear such fate.
The narrator was so desperate that he was formulating his suicide plan secretly in the hospital bed. He did not know that the accident brought him a new life with a mysterious psychiatric woman, Marianne Engel, who would enlighten his life with the meaning of love.
Marianne regularly visited the narrator in the hospital. She told him that they were lovers in the medieval Germany and she had lived several hundreds years to reunite with him at present. Bit by bit, Marianne unfolded the past with the narrator, once again reminding him the true and unconditional love that existed between them. At the beginning the narrator was very resistant and treated her as having Manic Depression or Schizophrenia. However, when Marianne's love continued to be pure and overwhelming, the narrator found himself could not help but loved her back. He knew that everything was hard to believe, but he did believe, in particular the love that filled him. A key object in the story, an arrowhead, first brought the narrator as a mercenary to Marianne as a nun. It then separated them when she was forced to kill him in order to save his pain from the torture of his soldier head. Finally at the present, it brought her back for him to release her final heart.
Another attractive part of the book were four old and touching stories told by Marianne and intertwined with her past and present. They happened in different places, but they were all about unconditional and unfailing love:-
The Good Ironworker (Italy) - a loving husband insisted that he himself be infected and killed when his wife acquired a deadly disease
The Woman on the Cliff (England) - a woman waiting for her husband's return at the foreshore. So persistent that the very spot of the cliff she stood for years fell apart
The Glassblower's Apprentice (Japan) - a dilemma for Sei to choose between her father and her love. She gave up her voice and became a nun. She blew glass flowers and store all her love into them
Siguror's Gift (Iceland) - a story about the unspeakable love between men. Siguror sacrificed himself for Einarr's son, although he knew he could never receive concrete open love in return
I like the way the story developed and unfolded itself. It was a lesson about love and pain. It was also something about faith and believing.
"The most difficult thing about writing, I'm discovering, is not the act of constructing the sentences themselves. It's deciding what to put in, and where, and what to leave out."
"I thought about her too much, and thinking stole time that could otherwise have been allotted to fearing debridement or formulating suicide plans."
"The more you give away, the more you have."
"I believe that if you do not listen to your heart in this matter, you will regret it forever."
"If you cannot love the pain, you can at least love the lessons it teaches."
"Hell is a choice because salvation is available to anyone who seeks it. The damned choose their fates, by deliberately hardening their hearts."
Simply addictive, you won't be able to put this down. Two incredible protagonists, so incomprehensible that they drag you into their own mystery and memories. It flows smoothly from beginning to end.
I loved the stories that Marianne tells the Burned Man. Really inventive and evocative. I think one of the best novels I ever read.