The Love Song of Monkey

Michael S. A. Graziano, Author . Leapfrog $13.95 (152p) ISBN 978-0-9815148-0-2

Neuroscientist and author Graziano (Hiding Places ) has crafted a compelling fantasy based on a semi-plausible “what if”: a physicist constructs a state-of-the-art machine in which a terminal patient undergoes a complete molecular rearrangement, coming out “unbreakable.” Narrated by Jonathan, a married 20-something dying of AIDS, the novel begins with a trip to Dr. Kack, of the experimental, highly secret Kwark-King cure, which Jonathan's wife, Kitty, has insisted he try. The machine hasn't exactly been successful—the intense pain has driven patients to opt out, and animals to die—but Dr. Kack manages to get Jonathan all the way through. Jonathan does, indeed, emerge transformed, but in a kind of waking coma that looks a lot like death. As such, Kitty and Dr. Kack drop his body in the ocean, and the bulk of Graziano's imaginative, intelligent narrative chronicles Jonathan's ethereal voyage beyond civilization and back again as a kind of superhuman, sustained by his love for Kitty. Twin ideas of forgiveness and mercy twist through this strange, moving, patiently wrought novel, making for a trippy but charming read. (Nov.)

Reviewed on: 09/29/2008
Release date: 11/01/2008
Paperback - 124 pages - 978-1-4587-8401-8
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