The Eden Man

Paul Lyons, Author Trafalgar Square Publishing $19.95 (254p) ISBN 978-0-233-98262-5
Profoundly serious and uproariously funny, this first novel by an Australian poet living in England introduces Peach O'Hare, whose chief work is meditation. But when his beloved Morag announces she's pregnant, he gives up searching for his soul and starts looking for a job, out of doors if possible, where he can more easily slip into the meditative mode. He becomes a bricklayer but, too poor to rent a truck, faces the problem of carrying a ton of bricks from the yard to the workplace. In a madly comic scene, his God-bitten friend, who calls himself Allwrath, drives up in a hearse, complete with coffin, which, says Allwrath, contains the body of the Lord. Peach persuades Allwrath to dump out his passenger and load the hearse with bricks the first in a series of nick-of-time rescues. In spite of the chaos he creates, the dust he raises and the people he discommodes, Peach never loses his faith or the goodwill of his employers. So happily mad are the goings-on, so immaculate a spirit is Peach, so delicate is Lyons's prose that one smilingly suspends disbelief. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 02/27/1989
Release date: 03/01/1989
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