The Ring Master

David Gurr, Author Atheneum Books $25 (739p) ISBN 978-0-689-11935-4
A wildly audacious but withal cleverly calculated, mishmash of history, myth, sex, psychology and humor that may put readers in mind of Thomas Pynchon, this massive tale recreates the Hitlerian nighmare in terms of Wagnerian dream, as given shape and substance in The Ring, Parsifal, etc. The principals in Gurr's dark Gothic forest-cum-stage set are the Ring Master, Adolf Hitler, hungry for world dominance; his true love, Edwina Casson-Perceval, Bayreuth's most dazzling opera star; and her brother Edwin, who as well as fathering his sister's child is a blackmailed double agent. Lesser characters include such Nibelungs as Himmler, Goering, Bormann, Goebbels and the terrifying Heydrichnot to mention psychologist Carl Jung. The whole performance is arranged in musical movements and appropriately is shot with songs and scenelets. It's original, entertaining, brilliantly inventiveand as a kind of dramatized investigation of the sinister psyche of Nazism, it makes a good deal of sense. Gurr wrote Troika and A Woman Called Scylla. (August)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1987
Release date: 01/01/1987
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