The Gargoyle by Andrew Davidson
reviewed by Marg Stokes
When I first heard about this debut novel from Pinawa’s Andrew Davidson, my gut reaction was that I probably wouldn’t like it. I immediately envisioned some sort of sci-fi/fantasy where gargoyles lived and breathed. As the weeks passed and time drew near for the release of The Gargoyle, I became more and more uneasy. As Librarian at the public library in Andrew’s home town, I really wanted to like this book but if I didn’t, how could I recommend it and how was I going to write a review? Maybe I’d just skip the review and no one would notice.
I needn’t have worried; I loved this book. From the very beginning, I was completely enthralled. It has everything – a gripping yarn, romance, history, and salvation and redemption for worthy characters. It has been extensively reviewed in the press, so I’ll leave you to discover the book for yourself. Bob Armstrong got it just right in his review of The Gargoyle in the Winnipeg Free Press when he said “It’s got enough highbrow stuff to make readers feel smart, but not enough to turn them off.” I don’t believe that’s meant as a put-down. Andrew Davidson is not pandering to readers. With his precise writing he has crafted a wonderful story that will have broad appeal.
I’ve met Andrew only once, but have heard stories how, growing up in Pinawa, he was a quiet kid who like to write. I don’t know how this small town boy came to write about a drug-addicted porn star, but I’m glad he did.
Note: This review will also appear in the Wednesday Aug. 20, 2008 edition of the local Pinawa newspaper, The Paper, and the online Pinawa Life Newsletter (in Sept. or Oct.).
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