The Christopher Park Regulars

Edward Swift, Author, Margaret Mirabelli, Editor
Edward Swift, Author, Margaret Mirabelli, Editor British American Publishing $17.95 (239p) ISBN 978-0-945167-16-7
Reviewed on: 06/01/1989
Release date: 06/01/1989
A gallery of eccentrics and misfits awaits the visitors to Christopher Park, a patch of benches in Manhattan's West Village where the time-honored tradition of being ``different'' lingers on. Swift ( Splendora ) has written an elegant, witty hymn to weirdness. Unlike performances on Broadway, those in Christopher Park are free; no reservation is required to sit and listen to ``regulars'' gossip, sing off-key, plan murders, choreograph a ballet--or a kidnapping. On any day the Rocky Mountain Diva might mangle Puccini, or Maria la Hija de Jesus, a transvestite from Mexico, might argue the meaning of Cinderella with the notoriously dull Jungian analyst Dr. Wormser. Cameo, a Texas beauty, is the most recent addition to the regulars, while 89-year-old novelist Cherokee Rose is no doubt a charter member. (Cherokee's bizarre demise at the hands of a demented creative writing student is perhaps the crowning point of the novel's grotesquery.) Swift's art is far from the bright lights, big city writing currently in vogue. He succeeds in capturing Manhattan because he focuses on a small, out-of-the-way corner and draws his characters with a miniaturist's meticulous care. (June)
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