The Book of Revelation

Rupert Thomson, Author Alfred A. Knopf $23 (272p) ISBN 978-0-375-40927-1
Thomson, a brilliant Londoner, certainly never writes the same book twice. Air and Fire was a wonderfully ambient tropical adventure, Soft a devastating contemporary London thriller. Revelation which resembles his previous novel, The Insult, more than either of these, ponders the consequences of an extreme episode in the life of an attractive (and unnamed) English ballet dancer and choreographer working in Amsterdam. One day, on a brief sortie to buy cigarettes for his lovely girlfriend, he is abducted by three mysterious masked women and held for nearly three weeks as a chained sexual slave in a bright room somewhere in the city. He is tattooed, violated, painfully tethered by his penis. He fights to preserve his equilibrium, gives the women imaginary names, tries to memorize their bodies. Then, as suddenly and unexpectedly as he was taken, he is released and must resume his existence. But his life has been twisted out of joint--his girlfriend doesn't believe his story; he finds he cannot work and becomes obsessed with searching for the women. Aided by a sudden legacy, he travels the world for several years, a lonely and disaffected soul in search of an anchor. Finally, back in Amsterdam, thinking he has discovered one of his captors, he assaults a girl in a club and is arrested. All this is conveyed in Thomson's usual fluent and riveting style, and the effect is mesmerizing. It is also affectless, however, for once the gripping sex-slavery episode is over, the book seems like a long anticlimax, which is concluded in a peculiarly unsatisfying way. Thomson can never be dull, and the notion of a man trying to recover from the consequences of rape is an intriguing one. Despite this narrative's glittering surface, however, it is not one of his sharper efforts. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 01/31/2000
Release date: 02/01/2000
Show other formats
FORMATS
Paperback - 272 pages - 978-0-375-70845-9
Open Ebook - 1 pages - 978-1-299-05950-4
Paperback - 272 pages - 978-0-7475-4569-9
Hardcover - 220 pages - 978-0-7475-4439-5
Hardcover - 264 pages - 978-1-4088-3323-0
Hardcover - 276 pages - 978-0-7475-8475-9
X
Stay ahead with
Tip Sheet!
Free newsletter: the hottest new books, features and more
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Email Address

Password

Log In Lost Password

PW has integrated its print and digital subscriptions, offering exciting new benefits to subscribers, who are now entitled to both the print edition and the digital editions of PW (online or via our app). For instructions on how to set up your accout for digital access, click here. For more information, click here.

The part of the site you are trying to access is now available to subscribers only. Subscribers: to set up your digital subscription with the new system (if you have not done so already), click here. To subscribe, click here.

Email pw@pubservice.com with questions.

Not Registered? Click here.