The Paper Grail

James Blaylock, Author Ace Books $17.95 (371p) ISBN 978-0-441-65126-9
Despite a misleadingly slow and uninspiring beginning, this supernatural thriller is enjoyable: a combination of Charles William's books War in Heaven and The Greater Trumps, but moved to a small town in Northern California. Here the Holy Grail is actually an origami cup which, folded to form different shapes, provides the owner with diverse powers. A quiet group of ordinary people have been helping Michael Graham, its guardian, to protect it. When Graham is about to die of old age, the Grail summons Howard Barton to visit his relatives and take over its guardianship. Of course, he has no idea that he has been summoned, nor even that the Grail exists, but neither factor stops Heloise Lamey and her greedy crew from using Howard to attempt to obtain the Grail for themselves. Blaylock ( The Last Coin ) redeems the familiarity of his plot with a gift for drawing characters who are eccentric in delightful and original ways, whichever side of the war they are on. (May)
Reviewed on: 04/29/1991
Release date: 05/01/1991
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