Accident CL

David Plante, Author Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) $18.95 (151p) ISBN 978-0-395-56925-2
A controlled paroxysm of despair, doubt, shaken faith and unexpected grace, Plante's taut, incantatory novel probes a consciousness on the edge of cracking up. The nameless narrator, a Catholic college student from New England (who, like the characters in Plante's Francoeur trilogy, is of French-Canadian ancestry) spends his junior year abroad in the Belgian town of Louvain. Oscillating between murderous jealousies and a vague, free-floating love of everyone, between grandiose visions and thoughts of God as total darkness, the narrator pits his agnostic outlook against the unwavering faith of Tom Donlon, a fellow American student whose naive, good-natured manner conceals his own spiritual crisis. When the two take a trip to Spain with the troubled daughter of an American businessman and her slightly sinister boyfriend, tragedy strikes, forever altering each person's destiny and beliefs. In chaste prose, this concise story grapples with whether a state of grace is possible in a fallen world, whether Catholic faith can flourish in a seemingly indifferent universe. (May)
Reviewed on: 04/29/1991
Release date: 05/01/1991
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