Glen David Gold (YGtCTO Words #81)

Carter Beats the Devil

Book written by Glen David Gold

Being someone who always feels the oppressive weight of all the books that I ought to be reading, I don’t always respond well to recommendations. With age (and possibly maturity), I have become more polite about it though it does feel like the person making the recommendation is just adding one more line to my task list. This shouldn’t stop you if you want to recommend something, but it might explain that deer-in-the-headlights look that you perceive on my side of the discussion.

Those who knew me well practically raced to tell me about Carter Beats the Devil when it came out and for months afterward. This allowed me the satisfaction of informing them that I had already read it. The cover and subject did indeed call out to me from the shelf as soon as I saw it. In fact, I turned the tables and started telling everyone else to read the book. Some may have.

Oddly enough, that isn’t my expectation with this series of posts, despite the title (You’ve Got to Check This Out), which I consider a statement of enthusiasm more than anything else. That is an important distinction, at least to me.

Glen David Gold

All along,

this has been an exercise in exploring the intersection of art and the average life- perhaps the way that the average life can and does improve with art, even if we want to pretend otherwise. Maybe it is only an argument that feels necessary at this time in this place.

When I gifted copies of Gold’s book or talked about it with someone that I managed to trap in a corner, I suppose that I only wanted to make a connection. To be fair, that was all the people telling me about the book were trying to do, also. In their case, they were probably being kind and expressing the fact that they knew me well enough. They had thought some about what I liked. In my case, I probably just wanted to babble at someone.

I’m not unaware that I don’t talk enough about the works of art under consideration. Of course, I am aware that you’re reading this on a device that allows you unending access to information about plot and appearance and background. Where does that leave us except small talk and self-revelation?

Gold’s book deserves better.

I knew something of the history of magic and the times that are portrayed. This meant I was deeply impressed by the way that the characters and the setting came to life. The journey of the main character felt like a move through revelation, which is not something I generally experience in historical novels. This is accomplished to such an extent that I still, after more than decade and a half, think about the book at least every few weeks. You should read it if you haven’t.

What’s it all about?

You’ve Got to Check This Out is a blog series about music, words, and all sorts of artistic matters. It started with an explanation. 58 more to go.

New additions to You’ve Got to Check This Out release regularly. Also, free humor, short works, and poetry post irregularly. Receive notifications on Facebook by friending or following Craig.

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