New Town: A Fable... Unless You Believe

Harry Blamires, Author
Harry Blamires, Author . Revell $12.99 (174p) ISBN 978-0-8007-5997-1
Reviewed on: 08/15/2005
Release date: 10/01/2005
Open Ebook - 176 pages - 978-1-4412-3921-1
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Eighty-nine-year-old Blamires, who has written extensively on English literature and theology, offers an offbeat allegory of heaven and earth. It begins as Bernard Dayman, lying on his deathbed, drifts off into what he imagines is his final sleep, only to enter a protracted dream state in which he encounters a purgatory-like place in the guise of an English village called Old Hertham. During his week in Old Hertham, he encounters an old flame named Eve (whom he once courted at a place called Eden Falls) and her virtuous daughter, Marie. Old Hertham is dominated by the estate agency Godfrey and Son, where the deceased people who "live" in Old Hertham can apply for residency in New Town. Blamires uses these conceits to hammer home the Christian truism that this world is not our home and the more compelling notion that entrance into the Kingdom of Heaven is deceptively simple, provided one's heart is in the right place. While the tone of Blamires's writing wanders somewhat bewilderingly from farcical to satirical to cautionary, and the allegory occasionally veers into the maddeningly obtuse, this book is likely to draw an appreciative audience who will enjoy the challenge of decoding its message. (Oct.)

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