Based on Thomas Mann's classic, but treading new territory all its own, Death in Venice, California is a darkly comic tale of yearning, its rewards and its costs. Yearning is often considered a passive thing. But this ignores the molten core of havoc that lies within, making it the most hair-trigger of states. Death in Venice, California, takes the burning concept of yearning-as-motivator, jams it into the craw of a staid, entitled central character, and sets him loose, unmoored, in the modern world.
Jameson Frame, an educated, even revered, middle-aged man of letters, flees the cold canyons of Manhattan for Venice, California, where he is soon surrounded by all that this Bedouin village has to offer: wiccans, vegans, transients, artists, drummers, muscle men, skateboarders, plastic surgeons, pornographers, tarot card readers and ghouls. And an arrestingly beautiful young man named Chase, the subject and object of his yearning.
From there, Frame enters into a spiral of liberation, exultation, and, ultimately, destruction. And, as Frame explores his terra incognita, he takes his reader with him on his wild journey of passion, ecstasy, chaos, and consumption, all exploring the nature of self against the modern landscape, all set to the rhythm of the human heartbeat.
Death in Venice, California is wryly observed, arrestingly visual in its language, and most of all, highly erotic. Not to be missed.
"An engaging allegorical pursuit of the mirage that is beauty's transcendence."--Kirkus
"McCabe retells the story of misguided dotage, dazzled and weak, by placing it in sunny California, while openly acknowledging its profane nature. The symbol of the Hanging Man Tarot card captures everything you need know about this character, and McCabe's withering attack on the skin deep culture dominates. The storytelling is consistently assured, the parallels to the sublime model serve McCabe's ends admirably—nothing gratuitous about them—and the whole hangs together, delivering its punch squarely. This is a well done piece." --Basso Profundo
VINTON RAFE McCABE started his career as an award-winning poet and a produced playwright before he began what would turn out to be a twenty-five year detour from his life's path by becoming a journalist, a radio talk show host and a television producer. During that time, he published ten works of nonfiction. After what he describes as "a doozy of a mid-life crisis," he returned to his first love, fiction. Death in Venice, California was created in something akin to a fever dream, in that the author completed the work in just twenty-eight days as part of the National Novel Writing Month annual challenge. He has just completed a second novel, Glossolalia and works as a literary critic for the New York Journal of Books.
|Author||Vinton Rafe McCabe|