The Sea Remains

Jean Sulivan, Author
Jean Sulivan, Author Crossroad Publishing Company $12.95 (118p) ISBN 978-0-8245-0946-0
Reviewed on: 06/01/1989
Release date: 06/01/1989
This intense, devotional novel, first published in France in 1964, centers on retired cardinal Ramon Ramiz, living in the fictional city of Noria on the Mediterranean. Sunk in thought, like a statue on the steps of his seaside villa, Ramon strives to recover a childlike freshness of soul, while searching his conscience and chastising his own and the world's vanity. He feels the Church relies on architecture and ceremony to make itself a presence. There are ``too many performers, too few seekers.'' He repulses old women who try to kiss his hand, and is chagrined that fishermen on the beach (reminders of the evangelical fishers of men) dislike priests. He sifts over old photos of first communions and weddings, judging them as dressed-up lies. Yet Ramon's intimates are Christians in many guises: e.g., his pious servant Dona Paca, or his niece Merche, fierce in her love for the Marxist Jose. The story culminates in the local enactment of the Passion, in which venal townsmen and criminals play the roles and Ramon--mysteriously, triumphantly--disappears. This is the first of Sulivan's 27 novels to be published in English. (Nov.)
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